I-Ching Hexagram Fifty, Cauldron

I-Ching 64 Hexagrams > 50. Cauldron

I-Ching-Hexagram Fifty - Cauldron



Pick new things.

Decorate to create a new environment.


This hexagram (Cauldron) states the shape of a cauldron.

Its 1st line describes the legs of a cauldron.

Its 2nd line and 4th line describes the belly of a cauldron.

Its 5th line describes the handles of a cauldron.

Its 6th line describes a device which carries a cauldron.

The image of this hexagram (Cauldron) states fire is burning on top wood.

This is the image of burning wood to cook.


A cauldron is not only a cooking utensil but also symbolizes the authority of a country.


When a cauldron is a cooking utensil, it can be used to show respect to deities and to nurture talents.


A cauldron symbolizes authority. 

There is a Chinese idiom to describe a person who has captured a country.

In the idiom, the word cauldron is used to represent authority.


The trigrams of Hexagram Forty Nine Reform and this hexagram (Cauldron) are totally opposite.

In Hexagram Forty Nine Reform, it is to abolish the old systems.

In this hexagram (Cauldron), it is to establish new systems to form a new regime.

Hexagram Forty Nine Reform is to destroy whereas this hexagram (Cauldron) is to build after having destroyed.

They complement each other but are different reflections of oneness (It is similar to Yin and Yang in one Tai Chi)


This hexagram (Cauldron) follows Hexagram Forty Seven Distress and Hexagram Forty Eight Well.

They are different stages of a country. 

For example,

[Distress]        In Zhou Dynasty, King of Zhou was “tripped” in You Li (the name of a place in ancient China).

[Well]             In Mt. Xi, he nurtured his virtue through a “well” so he ran everything smoothly.

[Reform]         He “reformed” by attacking King Zhou of Yin Dynasty.

[Cauldron]     He formed his “authority” and established Zhou Dynasty.


If a questioner has got this Hexagram (Cauldron), everything will go smoothly.

It is better to be creative and not to stick to the old rules.

One shall accept new methods.



[Summary of Hexagram Fifty – Cauldron]

Good fortune.

Everything goes smoothly.


It is because the trigrams of this hexagram represent humbleness and astuteness.

Things will progress gradually.

Yin energy goes upwards and arrives at 5th line of this hexagram.

This line matches up with 2nd line of this hexagram.

This represents that someone is moderate and meets talents who support his views.



1st Line

Turning a cauldron upside down so the legs of the cauldron face the sky.

This implies that although things go to opposite directions but these actions are right conducts.

Therefore, it is better to throw away rubbishes in the cauldron and clean the cauldron.

It is similar to a husband marrying a concubine to give birth to a boy in ancient China.

This is excusable. No fault.


This line is the beginning of this hexagram (Cauldron).

To cook with a cauldron, it is important to clean it firstly.

This implies that when an emperor forms a new country, it is import to eliminate villains around the emperor first.

In order to have a prince to inherit a country, an emperor marries a concubine to give birth a boy.

This is just a temporary fix.

To be a successful emperor, he shall not stick to trifles.


2nd Line


After the cauldron has been cleansed, it contains delicious fruits.

People with who you will associate are not kind.

One shall be careful and not being close with them.


A cauldron containing food entertains guests at a banquet.

Guests shall be strictly selected.

Some sick guests cannot join the banquet.

In this line, sickness implies misconduct.

It is good news that guests who have misconduct cannot join the banquet.

Therefore, one should be cautious and stay away from those guests.


3rd Line

The location of a cauldron’s handles is changed.

Therefore, the cauldron which contains hot food cannot be moved.

One can see food but cannot eat food.

Then, it is raining suddenly so the temperature of the cauldron is reduced.

No regret. It is good fortune.


A wrong creative method ruins everything.

Originally, the cauldron has handles.

When food in the cauldron is done, a device is used to carry the cauldron to deliver food.

Now, as the handles of the cauldron are changed, one looks at the cauldron and cannot move it.



4th Line

The legs of the cauldron are broken so food in the cauldron is throwing out.

It is misfortune when food which has thrown out will be served to an emperor.


This implies one is not capable to carry out a task for which one is responsible.

Therefore, one is not being trusted.

Then, one is punished severely.



5th Line


The cauldron has golden handles and metal devices which are used to carry the cauldron.

Therefore, the cauldron can be moved smoothly and people can eat the food in the cauldron.

It is better to keep righteous.


This line represents the handles of the cauldron.

This means the cauldron is moved smoothly.

When it has golden handles and a metal device which is used to carry the cauldron, it can be moved smoothly.

Therefore, food can be served to the emperor.



6th Line


It is as prestigious as pieces of jade devices which are used to carry the cauldron.

Good fortune.

Everything will go smoothly.


This line represents the device which is used to carry the cauldron.

Now, the jade device is decorated with pieces of jade.

This device looks more precious and prestigious.





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