Hexagram 5 – Water over Heaven – 12/3-12/8

Hsu – Waiting
Patience – Impatience – Timelessness  .:.  Codon Ring of Light

This is a time of pause, where the flow of life’s energy has stilled temporarily. To press on now against the flow of nature will bring undue frustration and misfortune. Take this time to wait in patient presence, listening to the quiet wisdom of inner truth. Too often when life makes us pause, we wait anxiously, unable to enjoy the slower pace of the moment. This hexagram councils to not give in to the feelings of agitation or Impatience. Instead, nourish yourself with the patient presence in the light of the heavenly energies and use the time to cultivate inner strength.

When anxiety and Impatience are allowed to dominate our resting consciousness, the doubt and fear eat away at our subtle bodies, disturbing our emotions, fixating the mind into neurotic loops, and weakening our ability to hear the light and move from our spirit. In this time of pause, it is essential to call upon the heavenly power of the creative. Our inner landscape must be spacious, quiet and clear for the heavenly force to inhabit. The pessimistic and pushy tendencies of the Shadow state fill our inner space with doubt and the density of fear, leaving no room for the heavenly presence. Practice patience. Enjoy the texture of these slow moments and use them to cultivate the sacred space of pause within. In this way, good fortune is assured.

Water over Heaven evokes the image of heavy clouds laden with water, high in the sky. There is threat of rain, but it has yet to pass. The delay builds anticipation of the coming storm. Heaven is known as ‘the creative’ and symbolizes the yang energies of creativity and strength. Water is known as ‘the abyss’ and in this position, it blocks the movement of the creative, and warns of the coming storm. This is not a time to press forward into new endeavors. Instead, prepare for the inevitable coming of the storm. Take care of the difficult tasks which have been delayed. Focus on what is most necessary and proceed with patient presence.


At the shadow level, there is an inability to find peace in the pause. There is a tendency for some to collapse into doubt and fear, spiraling into a pool of pessimism. Others may project the Impatience outward becoming pushy. Either form of Impatience leads to fighting against the heavenly presence. All of life is made of patterns of matter, energy and time. This key governs the hidden patterns of all life. Impatience fights against the great cycles of time, the synchronous movement of space, and most importantly the magical movement of life itself. Slow your breath, deepen your presence and find the hidden rhythms of life.

This is the gift of Patience. It opens slowly with experience, and grows naturally over time. The more you trust in the rhythmic patterns of life, the more patient you become. This gift allows you to stay in the flow, through any experience, good or bad. Cultivating deep inner calm allows for a sensitivity to the subtle emanations of life, and offers an attunment to the cosmic rhythms and celestial geometries of the whole of life. Trust that life knows best. Cultivating this patience in one’s life allows for the abundance of love to fill the present moment, and love dissolves time. At the highest level of being, Timelessness shatters all patterns, allowing the light hidden deep in our DNA to mutate into an entirely new way of Being.

Keys of the iChing – Jesse Chesnutt