Learn About What Is Forthcoming by Observing Tiny Clues
By finding tiny signs of change, one is able to learn about trends and developments in the status of things. Tiny things are unobtrusive and hard to notice. But they may later cause very obvious consequences. Everything goes from being hidden to being conspicuous, and from small to large, and other chain reactions may occur in the process. So when doing something, we should fully understand and carefully handle its dynamics. We should see both the big picture and small details, get ready early to address any errors and problems that may arise, and ensure success of the undertaking. This also calls for gaining a good understanding of science.
Seeing that King Zhou of Shang had chopsticks made of ivory, Jizi the sage became fearful… Seeing tiny signs, he knew what would sprout from them; seeing the clues, he could foretell the outcome. Therefore when seeing the ivory chopsticks he was fearful as he knew that all under heaven was not enough to satisfy the King’ greed. (Hanfeizi)
Therefore, when the sage sees tiny clues, he knows what is forthcoming; when he observes the beginning, he knows the end. (Yuan Kang: The History of Yue)