Archetype 54: Affection

CR P02 C54 A01

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father.”

—John 15:12–15

The Reading

This reading describes a transition in the relationship between Jesus and his disciples. Until now, their relationship has been a student/master relationship. Now Jesus has accepted his disciples as his most intimate friends. Still, they are not equals. Jesus will continue to provide them (and us) guidance, even after his looming death on the cross.

The Hexagram


CR P02 C54 A02

The hexagram consists of the trigram Word over the trigram Wonder. These two concepts describe the kind of love captured in this archetype: a younger lover who follows a beloved. Wonder characterizes the younger lover, and the Word characterizes the older, wiser consort.

The Archetype

There is a time...

  • To be taken into the family, but to be careful not to upset existing relationships.
  • To assimilate into the relationship with discretion.
  • To be mindful of the risk of miscommunication, which can lead to misunderstandings and hurt feelings.
  • To remember that even the best relationships require ongoing work and commitment.

Now is that time.

Moving Lines

Moving Line in the First (Bottom) Position

 A moving line in the bottom position describes one whose status is due to a special relationship with another who is higher. This is a time not to gloat, but to work quietly and try to fit in to existing patterns. This does not imply passivity, but rather a softer and subtler way of achieving things.

Moving Line in the Second Position

A moving line in the second position describes a lover who has been disillusioned with a partner and is now in a state of loneliness. Perhaps the disappointing partner has been unfaithful or has left the relationship. But still, the disappointed lover remains loyal and true.

Moving Line in the Third Position

A moving line in the third position describes one who dreams for what is not likely to be granted. The dreamer is not being realistic. But if the dreamer can compromise, some of what the dreamer wants may be obtainable.

Moving Line in the Fourth Position

A moving line in the fourth position counsels patience. It seems that it is too late to achieve one’s dreams. But the line tells the dreamer to remain committed to Wisdom’s way and to resist the temptation to give in to sorrow. What one truly needs is going to be granted.

Moving Line in the Fifth Position

A moving line in the fifth position describes a lover who has been taken into a relationship of modest needs. Success depends on the lover adapting with grace, modesty, and humility to this situation.

Moving Line in the Sixth (Top) Position

A moving line in the top position describes a relationship in which the partners are simply acting their parts without feeling, involvement, or commitment. They look on the relationship with disdain and disrespect. If this doesn’t change, the relationship has little hope.

Other interpretations of Archetype 54:

Internal Links:

  • Return to the Hexagram Index Table [click here].
  • Return to Consulting the Christian I Ching [click here].
  • Purchase a printed copy of Wisdom's Way; The Christian I Ching [click here].
  • Learn about our Online Christian I Ching Workshop [click here].
  • Find out about personal consultations [click here].

Reproduced with permission from Wisdom's Way; The Christian I Ching copyright (c) 2015 Roger Sessions.