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I Ching Hexagram 39: 蹇 “Obstruction” – Chien

What Is I Ching Hexagram 39: 蹇 “Obstruction” ?

Chien is the Chinese name of the I Ching Hexagram 39. With inner and outer trigrams forming water over mountain, this Hexagram is called ‘obstruction’ or alternatively named ‘afoot’ or ‘limping’.

Hexagram 39 shows how to deal with a temporary setback. By pondering the situation and working with others, progress can be imitated again.

Interpretation & Meaning of IChing Hexagram 39: 蹇 "Obstruction" -  Chien

Interpretation & Meaning of Hexagram 39:

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Hexagram 39 symbolizes the event of obstruction to progress. This can be very frustrating, but when dealt with properly, the situation will pass by very quickly. Turn the mind inward in order to discover the correct answer to the problem.

Hexagram 39 shows that by working together to solve a problem, a conflict or obstacle can be resolved quickly and without any damage. Sometimes it takes strengthening a weakness in order to make the group stable once again.

Only when we reach out to others to find a common solution is progress able to start again. It is easy to fill the mind with negative thoughts caused by anger and frustration, but by taking the time to stop and meditate, a change within the mind can be made to fix any inner problems that might be causing the worldly issue.

I Ching Hexagram 39 – Personal Goals:

When any progress has come to a halt, it is important to think clearly about what must be done to initiate progression once again. What changes need to be made? What am I currently doing that is causing the problem? What can I be doing differently?

These are questions that can be asked in any situation in order to find the answer to this problem. Often when we look at ourselves instead of the relationship as a whole, the hindrance is easier to see and then fixed.

During this time of obstruction, take the time to mediate on the current frame of mind. Is the flow of thoughts positive or negative? It sometimes takes a moment of stepping back to realize an attitude problem that needs changed in order to progress. When we blame others for our own problems, it is then impossible to find a solution.

I Ching Hexagram 39 – Love:

If the feelings of stagnation have risen in a relationship, now is the time to ponder deeply about what solutions can be implemented to spark the essence of true love once again.

I Ching Hexagram 39 – Career & Business:

In the work area, take the time to come to the aid of others in order to act together to find a solution. It is important to gather your strength and resources to help you overcome the obstacle.

When something has stopped the flow of progression in the work area, it often takes the effort from every team member in order to get things moving again. Seek to help others who might be having troubles in their own department.

Fixing one small detail can often start the work progression once again. Other times try to find others that are willing to help you overcome the problem.


OBSTRUCTION. The southwest furthers.
The northeast does not further.
It furthers one to see the great man.
Perseverance brings good fortune.


Water on the mountain:
The image of OBSTRUCTION.
Thus the superior man turns his attention to himself
And molds his character.


Hexagram 39 symbolizes that there will come a time when an obstruction is placed before us. This hexagram gives wisdom on how to deal with the situation and also shows some options to take to overcome the difficult time.

Through any phase of difficulty, it is important to keep a clear head in order to think properly. Being over whelmed with emotions can only hinder the process of finding a usable solution. It is one thing to be able to recognize the problem; it is another to know how to deal with the problem effectively.

The 64 Hexagrams

1乾 Force Ch’ien2坤 Field K’un
3屯 Difficult in the Beginning Chun4蒙 Youthful Folly Meng
5需 Waiting Hsu6訟 Conflict Sung
7師 Integrity Shih8比 Holding Together Pi
9小畜 Attention To Detail Hsiao Ch’u10履 Correct Conduct Lu
11泰 Peace T’ai12否 Stagnation P’i
13同人 Fellowship T’ung Jen14大有 Abundance Ta Yu
15謙 Humbling Ch’ien16豫 Enthusiasm Yu
17隨 Following Sui18蠱 Correcting Ku
19臨 Nearing Lin20觀 Observation Kuan
21噬嗑 Biting Through Shih Ho22賁 Grace Pi
23剝 Splitting Apart Po24復 Returning Fu
25無妄 Innocence Wu Wang26大畜 Great Accumulating Ta Ch’u
27頤 Nourishment I28大過 Preponderance of the Great Ta Kuo
29坎The Abysmal K’an30離Radiance Li
31咸Courtship Hsien32恆Constancy Heng
33遯 Retreat Tun34大壯 Great Invigorating Ta Chuang
35晉 Progress Chin36明夷 Darkening of the Light Ming I
37家人 The Family Chai Jen38睽 Opposition K’uei
39蹇 Obstruction Chien40解 Deliverance Hsieh
41損 Decrease Sun42益 Increase I
43夬 Displacement Kuai44姤 Coming to Meet Kou
45萃 Gathering Together Ts’ui46升 Ascending Sheng
47困 Exhaustion K’un48井 The Well Ching
49革 Revolution Ko50鼎 The Cauldron Ting
51震 The Arousing Chen52艮 Stilling Ken
53漸 Gradual Progress Chien54歸 妹 The Marrying Maiden Kuei Mei
55豐 Abundance Feng56旅 The Wanderer Lu
57巽 Ground Sun58兌 Open Tui
59渙 Dispersion Huan60節 Limitation Chieh
61中孚 Center Returning Chung Fu62小 過 Small Surpassing Hsaio Kup
63既 濟 After Completion Chi Chi64未 濟 Before Completion Wei Chi
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