Nine in the third place means:
He hides weapons in the thicket;
He climbs the high hill in front of it.
For three years he does not rise up.
Here fellowship has changed about to mistrust. Each man distrusts the other, plans a secret ambush, and seeks to spy on his fellow form afar. We are dealing with an obstinate opponent whom we cannot come at by this method. Obstacles standing in the way of fellowship with others are shown here. One has mental reservations for one's own part and seeks to take his opponent by surprise. This very fact makes one mistrustful, suspecting the same wiles in his opponent and trying to ferret them out. The result is that one departs further and further from true fellowship. The longer this goes on, the more alienated one becomes.
Translator of this version of the I Ching is Richard Wilhelm. If you missed any posts in this series, please utilize the I Ching label below.