We carve and conquer the one, the nameless source of life, with distinction of opposites, light vs dark, hot vs cold. From the interplay between “opposites” we construct the world of thought, a world of conflict. What we have separated we must reunite.
Through the mechanism of thought we attempt to control the chaos of our existence as we define and label the universal, inside and out. We are able to perceive contrast, the line between light and dark, which we foolishly mistake as permission to separate the universal experience into material opposing forces. We label aspects of the single whole as distinct and separate opposites. We mistake this imaginary line we invented as a border and prepare both sides for war. It is only through our labels that we find conflict, both individual and throughout the world as a whole. We created the world of right and wrong, up and down, light and dark, a world of distinction, definition, and opposites.
We turn our invented thoughts into beliefs and allow them to create division where there is unity. We separate the universal, one, into two: light and dark, hot and cold, good and bad. We define our world with the interplay between these “opposites” and from this we create the endless conflict of things and images. Not only have we divided and labeled the world around us, but also the psychological world within. We drive this division with our greatest fuel, our aversion for pain and our lust for pleasure. We fail to see that even pleasure and pain are united as one, by their inherent impermanence. We hope to live in light and pleasure forever and this desire dooms us to darkness. Light must fade, things must change and the only consistency is the impermanence of all things . When pleasure fades and unpleasant sensations dominate we revolt against them and long for pleasure, we do not accept what is and instead we chase an illusion in attachment, conflict and misery. The “opposites” we created of light and dark give us the fantasy and illusion that we can choose to live only in light and deny darkness. The separation between dark and light is not real, it is only imagined, thought into existence, it has no basis in truth. Light and dark are bound as one, totality.
As we carve up the universal to gain control over the physical what do we lose? We lose connection, balance and endless vital energy that is wasted managing these conflicts of our creation. This dichotomy we have created is bound to resolve in our search for authentic self and truth. As we seek to gain, we fail to see that this promises us only loss. The arising defines the return. Only through awareness of this truth can we resolve opposites and find peace.
In the blending of light and dark harmony is found.
How well do you know yourself? Are you filled with both pride and shame about yourself? Are you stuck in a repetitive pattern of thought? Do you experience the world from a single emotional view point? Is there part of yourself you are trying to, but can’t change? Is there part of yourself you wish wasn’t there?
Premise: All negative emotional responses are directly tied to our positive aspects of our persona. We attempt to suppress them when we should embrace them.
The war we fight with ourselves to become the vision we think we should be is a war without end and the bloodiest of all conflicts. Throughout history human beings have blindly conditioned themselves to separate and isolate their positive and negative aspects of self. We separate these aspects of ourself as if they were independent entities altogether, entities of their own accord without reference to the other. We glorify the good and disown the bad. Like all things we hope to divide and conquer, in our never ending quest to prolong pleasure and avoid pain. We create conditions for our happiness: I will be happy when I am no longer like this. or I will be happy when I change that. We reject what is and in doing so we reject truth and reality, adopting a life of violent reaction and conflict. How can you separate light from dark? Hot from cold? Good from bad? To do so would tear at the very structure of our universe and existence, the result would be chaos. Disconnection is unnatural. Why can we not accept what is and why do we fight so viscously and blindly with ourselves in a futile attempt to control the uncontrollable?
All light creates shadows and all of our strengthens are born in our weakness. There is no escaping this, as it is universal truth. In the end self understanding comes not from striving and ambition to be the best version of self, but rather from objective awareness and acceptance of knowing yourself as you really are. Acceptance of the presence of pain and loss of pleasure is hard and as a result we create internal division, compartments, that we spend our lives trying to manage, managing our opposites. We cherish growth, yet struggle with stagnation and obstacles, which actually provide the motivation for growth. We thrive with passion, yet are burdened with anxiety. We treasure our thoughts, yet we slip into worry and obsession. We seek reverence with the sacred, yet deny sadness. We treasure wisdom, yet are paralyzed by fear. By dividing these aspects we doom ourself to a repetitive emotional loop, as we never experience the whole truth, but instead repeat the disconnected aspects over and over. Failing to understand the goal is not eradication of the negative but resolution of opposites, which comes not from suppression but from complete reunification and acceptance of what is. We must accept all of ourselves: the good and the bad, the pleasant and the unpleasant, the strengths and weakness if we hope to be whole and find truth and ever lasting peace.
The awareness of self is a unique feature of humans only shared with a select few species on earth. This highly evolved feature is a gift of great burden. Our self awareness rips us from our unity with the universal and thrust us into the isolation of individuality. We move from unity to division: “me” and the world around “me”. Psychologically the state of individual consciousness, awareness of self, is a state defined by the forces of vulnerability, isolation and the crushing feeling of being alone. This breeds an overwhelming sense of insecurity: How do people perceive me? Where do I fit? Where do I belong?. These questions are hard to answer and scary to sit with. From this delicate moment in ones lives we blindly surrender to conformity, the path laid before us. We succumb to the conventions of society, religion and social structure: the division of self, denial of self, suppression of self, and clinging to these authorities doing anything to feel part of something, to feel part of anything.
The grotesque severing of self doesn't stop there as the destruction of holism continues, we divide and reduce ourselves even further into my good side and my bad side. We subscribe to the moral authority and now view ourselves as incomplete and see happiness as a place only to be found when we are only good and have destroyed the bad. We use the structure and mechanism of society, it’s ideals and beliefs, to suppress what is naturally part of us. In this moment we deny reality and resign ourself to a life of conflict with self. Becoming individuals we destroy holism, both the unity we share with nature and the the unity within are conquered, divided and defined. This unconscious conditioning becomes the unseen conflict of our lives, leading to endless war with anxiety, fear, worry, attachments, sadness, and craving. We no longer accept equanimously each moment as it is, instead we suffer eternally for what we think it should be.
We follow this model and compartmentalize our lives into the longing for good and the aversion for the bad, diluting ourselves into a false sense of control. Without even knowing we surrender our innocence and intelligence to a broken model that has only lead mankind to a constant state of conflict and misery. The path laid before us is one filled with: reductionism and fragmentation, unnecessary comparison which is the fuel of insecurity, and competition which is the birthplace of aggression. Like blind monkeys we follow the broken authority and begin construction of our ego, our mask and a closet full of skeletons.
When constructing our identity we only want the finest building materials. We love compliments and reject criticisms. I like this, I hate that. We quickly grab at those things that make us feel important, significant, and strong. We reject the feelings that make us feel insignificant, vulnerable and weak. As we construct the greatness of self and repress the shadow the chasm and conflict we create widens and our chance of living a holistic life lessens. This imbalanced wheel will never turn fully and will always remain lopsided. As a result we will be stuck, continually repeating the same aspect of life over and over, never completing the circle of any emotion completely. We stay trapped in our conditioned emotional response. Never seeing that our strengthen and weakness are one.
The greatest danger in this division is that we are completely unconscious of it as we mimic and copy this broken story of mankind. We allow the ego to build itself with half truths. “I am smart. I am strong. I am wise. I am caring.” Ignoring the shadows of these traits as they are reminders of our vulnerability and flaws. We enter the world not whole, but with a persona built like a house of cards, propped up with imagined accolades, inflated attributes and without a foundation in truth and wholeness. We create beliefs and identities to escape truth, we become fugitives on the run, our lives become a frantic rat race as we maniacally try to maintain the war with self.
Everyone reading this has built this house as we seemingly had no other choice. It is understandable. In youth we are blessed with boundless energy and able to maintain this disconnected version of self. We are able to keep building this incomplete image of self without facing our vulnerabilities directly. As we age we begin to lose our vital energy and ability to hold the darkness back and we meet the darker side of our strengths. We spend so much of our life constructing this perfectly incomplete persona and then become stuck in a rigid mindset, mental patterns and emotional habits of our own creation and conditioning. We have only embraced half of the truth preventing us from completing the circle, so we are doomed to repeat the broken fragments over and over again.
As our shadows begin to demand attention lashing out with anxiety, anger, worry, sadness and fear our first response is rejection, distraction, denial, suppression and disconnection. We reject these unpleasant sensations as not part of us, something foreign that must be eradicated. They overwhelm our undefended underbelly. We begin to live in a state of attachment and mental reaction, longing for pleasure and avoidance of pain, and call it living. Our nervous system rages with fury as it tries to maintain this run away train of disconnection. The war with self has escalated and disconnection defines our individual and worldly consciousness.
Humans have created thousands of churches, religions, educations philosophies, laws, beliefs, and faiths: all aimed to tear man apart, conquer nature and promise happiness in the future, even happiness after death. The model of authority and follower is a path to nowhere as it puts the truth always outside of self and chains it to the past or exiles it to the future. We destroy life which is only in the moment. We exhaust ourselves trying to fix a model of self that will forever remain broken, as the “I” we are trying to fix is only part of our story. We try to suppress half our experience and claim our brighter half to be our whole when we should embrace it all, the good and the bad. Time is our phycological enemy as we tell ourselves: “I will be happy when I do this.” or “I will be happy when I become that”. Humankind has been making these empty promises to themselves for thousands of years with little or no happiness in sight.
We can be happy right now, instantly, in this moment! We only have to have total awareness of our experience, the complete experience not the one we fabricated. We must look into both our pleasure and our pain and see where we have neglected and where we have over-indulged. We need only to have total and complete awareness of this whole process and once this is achieved we can simply set down the conflict and become whole instantly! You must be the one to understand your own "ego-process" as you are the sole keeper and creator of it. Religions, doctors, therapists, gurus or masters can not do this for you. There are no authorities of any kind who can do this for you as they do not live in your house, no one can find your inner truth for you. There is no one coming to save you.
There are two aspects to all things. The ancient philosophy of yin/yang is not as much a created paradigm, but rather it is an empirically observed reality. Strength is always tied to weakness. You cannot define light without darkness. There is alway mutual dependence between two seemingly opposites. How can you describe darkness without reference to light? Our personal attributes are no difference. When we constructed the ego did we include whole person or only the pretty, shiny, “perfect” person? What have we left in shadow? Only through acceptance of shadow can we hope to become whole, only through the resolution of opposites can we find truth, freedom and love.
Have you ever followed powerful “negative” emotions to their root to truly understand from where they arise? What is anxiety, what is fear, worry, anger, and sadness? Is it possible they are tied directly to other aspects of ourself that we labeled positive? Are they actually the shadows of our passion, wisdom, thoughtfulness, strength and reverence? Are they our greatest gifts that we have left unharvested out of the denial of pain and lust for pleasure?
When one allows self to become quiet and extremely still, the chatter silenced, we begin to be able to observe life completely and honestly. Meditation is awareness that is extremely sensitive without objective or goal, not seeking just observing and accepting. Through this pure observation we begin to live less in reaction to the pain and pleasure of life. Just below the stormy surface the sea is calm. Through objective-less awareness we see our patterns of either exaggerating a certain emotion or denying it completely. We begin to see the harmonic patten of light and dark and the inseparable seam that binds them together with the weight of the universe. We begin to see the gifts tied to our shadow.
Anxiety is the balance point of our connection and our passion. A powerful force that if misused convinces the individual that something is wrong when nothing is wrong. Is anxiety not the positive aspects of creativity, intelligence, passion gone astray? - Creating something that isn’t there? If one sits with anxiety in great and utter stillness we see it’s true nature. Anxiety is directly linked to intelligence, passion, spiritual insight which all are powerful aspects of life that we are all to grateful to carry. From this we realize that it is something we should understand and accept rather than suppress. Anxiety is our friend in the sense that it allows us to understand and process life in a greater capacity. It grants us connection, access to empathy and compassion, the greatest of human’s attributes. The danger of anxiety is when we deny it, surprise it or try to conquer it. Anxiety cannot be willed away as it is us and we are it. There is no separation in truth. We must simply understand it and accept it to complete the circle.
Passion gives birth to anxiety as it gives us the illusion of control as creativity and connection flow from within defining our experience. When we are passionate we have complete presence and focus, we are connected to our true self. Connection may be man’s greatest pleasure. There are no distractions and we mistake this for control and when our passion wanes and connection is broken we are left frantic and anxious. We cling trying to prolong the satisfaction of connection and passion, which instantly transforms passion into desire, craving and anxiety. When the illusions of control are not maintained anxiety ensues. We grip down with control to restore order, yet the seeking of control only manifest chaos. We live a life of hedonism and empty pleasure as we reach out blindly and frantically to fulfill our desire for pleasure and lust for control. The only control we have is acceptance that we do not have control or to realize that the controller is the controlled.
Passion and connection are powerful to behold and wield. In passion we find connection to self and subsequently the world. So much of our lives we try and connect outward to others without the deep connection and awareness of self and the insecurities that drive us to reach out. This seeking of light and pleasure from the external world is recipe for anxiety as we cannot sustain the pursuit and over time we exhaust ourselves chasing a flame that does not last andas we do so we deny the root of our internal insecurities and pain. If we seek the resolution of our insecurities in the external world we are doomed to failure as they are born within and this is where we must find acceptance and resolution. As our energy wanes and life inevitably shifts we become unable to maintain connection, the table turns, and the angst of the external world flows inward overwhelming our heart into the state of anxiety. As we become flooded with a thousand bad things from the outside world that could happen, our imagination runs with this poisoned fuel. The positive-creative transformed to the negative-destructive.
A life without passion and anxiety is a life without connection and joy. Characterized by melancholy and depression. We move through life dull, disconnected and without intelligence of self. Unable to connect with self we are unable to maintain real and honest relationships with others. Without passion our life is a life of grey tones without the spark of light and color, we become disconnect from the treasures of our own heart.
Are you filled with excessive passion thatleaves you manic and anxious or are you left in a state of melancholy and apathy without passion to light your way? Passion and connection light our lives, yet unconfined the fire will consume us or leave us empty without light.
Anger is the balance point of our confidence, self esteem, and a strong sense of right and wrong. It gives us the strength to put ourselves out into the world. Anger is growth. It allows us to identify obstacles and injustice, and formulate plans to push through these blockages and propagate life into higher level of organization. Without balance anger can easily lead to arrogance, rage and blindness. Yet in our quest for growth, anger can lead us blindly into inflexibility. If the obstacle is to large we must bend our will in to find a solution. The single ingredient to all great plans is flexibility as it accounts for the chaos of life. If we lack flexibility our strength quickly transforms into anger, rage and stagnation as we try to force life to respond to our plan. This imbalance turns our quest for growth ironically into stagnation. So in the attempt to use strength to move life forward all we have found is stagnation, the opposite of growth.
A life without strength and anger is a life of timidness and the inability to stand up for ourselves. Without this thrust, growth is beyond our grasp as we stagnate in indecision. Our life loses vision and we find no movement forward, stuck, as we fester in the stagnation of resentment.
Do you live in the inflexibility of anger’s grip or are you unable to stand up for yourself as you are devoid of anger and it’s strengthens? Benevolence is harmony between belligerence and timidness, as it moves all life in the direction of positive becoming. Strength directs growth, yet without flexibility it will gnarl and stagnate.
Fear is the balance point of our security and wisdom. Fear is the unknown. As we overcome fear to allow life to move into the unknown we gain experience and wisdom. It is only through the alchemy of movement that we turn fear into wisdom, like stone into gold. Fear helps us to regulate life and protect it. Yet unbalanced fear’s coldness and stillness can overwhelm us and imprison us. “Is it better to have loved and lost then never loved at all?” Fear’s positive protection can encase the heart in stone, rationalize that the heart is safe from harm, but life is meant to move and connect, severing the connection to life as a means of protection is wrought with foley. We seek security and as a result we find fear. The line between risk and gain is found in fear. We build a great wall of security and protection and over time becomes our prison cells and we are no longer living life, but hiding as it passes by without us.
A life without wisdom and fear is a life of fantasy and recklessness. Without the protection we run blindly into the swords of this world. Unable to regulate our intimacy we fling ourselves carelessly into relationships without regard to the damage it causes us and others. We squander our life’s precious resources into a state of impotence.
Are you paralyzed in conservative orthodoxy by the cold stillness of fear or are you an adrenaline junky who pursues fantasy without any protection of life from fear? Wisdom and security are necessary, yet the gate of life must remain open to allow connection and movement.
Worry is the balance point of our thoughts and caring. To care and nurture another is a gift of our species, but all to quick the boundaries can get washed away. Is thoughtfulness and caring not the beginning of worry and obsession? We take care of others without regard to self and through this we only smother those we care for and exhaust ourselves. Is your care for another genuine or are you escaping self as you care for them? We need thoughts to process our experience and help us to integrate with others, but quickly our experience is highjacked by our thoughts as they become obsessions and worry that completely remove us for the experience of the moment. To give we must also receive. Giving is a gift, yet boundaries are necessary to maintain balance between selflessness and selfishness.
A life without worry and care fragments us into narcism and we are unable to care for others, unable to see past the swirling mess that is me. We cling and cloy to the obsession of “I” and “me” failing to embrace those around us.
Do you smother others in your worry or are you a narcissist unable to reach out past self to help others? Thoughtfulness and caring for others is of great value, yet must be balanced by thoughtfulness and caring for self is essential.
Sadness is the balance point of our reverence and the sacred. Trying to behold something essential in life is the gateway to loss. To connect to the reverence of life, the sacredness of life is to connect to loss of life. Sadness is the last act. To penetrate to the essential we grasp, desperate to hold it, posses it, yet the tighter we grip and the harder we seek the more it slips through our fingers. By seeking we will never find. To be with the sacred we cannot have objectives and goals of possession. Religions were formed to possess and sell the faith. The wars fought in the name of faith only show us we cannot posses the divine experience. We are only buying second hand truths and convincing ourselves we know God. Belief and faith are attempts to escape truth. As we try to grasp the spirit we transform the divine into rigid ideology and extremism. In the desire to escape, is endless sadness and true loss, loss of the experience of the truth in each moment.
The sacred cannot be possessed it must be allowed to remain as free as our breath coming and going without control, defined by gain and loss, by arising and passing. The seeking of sacred must end, only through complete awareness and freedom can it be experienced. To avoid sadness we cling to that which cannot be grasped. Sadness must be experienced and the irony as we grasp at the beauty of reverence we crush the tender flowers in our desperate grip.
A life without reverence and sadness is a life without spiritual connection. Without sadness we are cut off from a spiritual life and resign our self to the empty life of the rational. Nothing is sacred and the world becomes a playground for our cynicism. We find no value in anything including ourselves, our self-worth plummets, and we turn our swords inwards in act of self deprecation. We fail to see the beauty in the rise and fall of life, not accepting life is only a never ending tail of gain and loss.
Do you lack a spiritual life as you are unable to sit with sadness or have you become a zealot in a ivory tower of self righteousness as you try and posses the divine? In our avoidance of sadness we lose the gateway to the divine. In our clinging we lose the essential and live a life of fanatical extremism or empty rationalized cynicism.
Through constant reductionism we sever these relationships along clearly divided lines of the opposing: good versus bad. Separated forever. We are meant to pass through each emotion with ease, experiencing each facet of life, allowing all to flow in and out of each other. We do not choose balance, instead we cling to a single emotional response, become attached or deny certain emotions altogether. We have conditioned ourselves into emotional ruts in the name of survival, using certain emotions like crutches helping us hobble through our incomplete life. This leads to an unbalanced life. We sell the positive to gain us stature and position in society and we trap the dark swirling storm inside that we constantly wage war with. Very common to the modern world is the pattern of steeping ourselves in anger to move ahead in this competitive society and denying sadness cutting off our connection to a spiritual life. We live a war of suppression, denial, and disconnection. Acceptance and balance never our goal. What emotions are you denying? What emotional response are you stuck in?
Be deeply aware about the space between who you portray yourself to be when part of a group setting: school, social, church, work etc. vs how you feel inside. The mask we wear has been formed through thousands of years of conditioning, we are trained to become part of this sickened society. We are aware that it is sick but still our desire to fit in, be accepted and maintain our comfort morphs us into something other than self. We build this front subtly slowly, day after day, and year after year, all too soon it is no longer a mask, no longer removable and we lose awareness of self and become a series of harmonic reaction along the line of a single polar relationship of opposites. Like a broken record on repeat we continue re-living a single emotional aspects of life, we react in anger, anxiety, worry, sadness or fear and never break free from this conditioned routine.
We need all these aspects to live a full and conscious life. From the birth of our potential fear guards our treasure house and regulates how we move this potential into motion. The strength of anger allows us to organize and initiate growth, identifying obstacles and formulating appropriate plans to overcome them. Worry gives us thought which allows for integration and processing of life. Sadness connect us to the spiritual, which is the tail of gain, the beauty of life, and loss, death of life. It is in passion that we find connection to life’s greatest gift, to know thyself, and complete acceptance of what is. This is the only path to true and an everlasting happiness that transcends even death.
Do not think in fragments, but allow yourself awareness without objectives and to accept no boundaries. Perceive the whole of your process, both the positive and negative and you will be freed from the war of the opposites.
We constantly fight what is there: we fight fear that is there, we fight anxiety that is there, and we wonder why we are in a constant state of conflict and misery. This is the human condition complete: the conflict between what is and what we think it should be.
It is hard to accept that theses dark aspects, that we were trained to suppress and avoid, are us. It is even harder to accept that thepursuit of pleasure is the greatest source of our misery. See the whole picture, be always aware. The presence of negative sensation is all to obvious as they riddle our body in pain. In happiness we are seemingly oblivious to the sensations that we are becoming addicted and spending our lives clinging to. When you feel negative be aware of your sensations and when you feel positive take time to be aware of these sensations, they are the birthplace of attachment. This complete awareness that contains both aspects is the only path to holism, connecting the disconnected. We wrestle endlessly with questions: Am I a good person? or Am I bad person? We fight to be one and deny the other when in fact we are always both, neither good nor bad, simply a human being. We have been taught good vs bad our whole lives, but to learn they are the same thing, is the beginning of the resolution of opposites and the end of our internal war.
The path to this liberation is found when the mind is quite, the chatter of thoughts silenced and a awareness without objective is fostered. This allows us to see what actually is. Observe truth completely instead of only seeing what we want life to be or think life should be. The illusion we lust after is that of light and pleasure forever without end and without shadow. Only a fool would pursue this as a possibility.
Our lives are characterized by stress that is induced by an unbalanced mind, a mind that only accepts parts of reality and denies the whole truth. Stuck in a single emotional pattern we can consider ourselves as having lost the war. All to easily the boundary between our strengths and weakness erodes; thoughtfulness slips into worry, reverence into sadness and grief, we allow wisdom to manifest in fear, we allow growth to become stagnation and anger, we allow passion and connection to spill out in anxiety. Once this occurs life is lost. The negative emotions take over only when we justify and defend them or deny them completely. Acceptance brings balance and peace.
Your negative emotions may be justified and appropriate in response, but ask yourself are they serving me?
Begin to observe yourself with objective awareness, having no goal, seeking nothing. Follow your emotions to the roots, both the positive and negative, and you will see that they share the same root. If you try and destroy the negative you will destroy the positive. Denial of negative emotions is like ignoring a problem child, they will just continue to act up until they get the attention they deserve. Become aware and accept these negative sensation this way you will not need to act them out. Instead of trying to become something, accept what you are and you will find yourself less reactive to negative emotions. They will still exist but no longer will you react and act upon them. Once the resolution of opposites occurs andbalance of the mind is restored victory is certain. When the mind is free of negative mental fragmentation and conflict, energy will become abundant and life will spill forth and flourish.
With great light there will always be shadow. As we build the ego and deny the shadow, what do we leave in the darkness? We abandoned our our emotional and spiritual selves, which contains our greatest strengthens, locking them in darkness. Qualities of self-understanding, meditation, awareness, consciousness, acceptance, and selfless love have all but been lost. Everyone hides their positivequalities behind the mask of insecurity, inflated ego projections and false pleasantries. Due to lack of development of our culture people do not know how to act in a proper and natural way, as we are disconnected from self. We do not know true love and resign life to the confines of possessive love, love with expectations. What we see now is a world where everyone is afraid to speak their minds and hearts, we perceive our insecurities as singular not understanding their universal nature. Rational thoughts of division, comparison and competition have isolated and imprisoned us in spiritual impotence. The “I” we have created is singular but the “ego process” is universal. We built this lopsided house to fit in, to fight against our loneliness and isolation, yet we are not alone, this process is universal. Everyone is going through this.
It is time to illuminate the shadows. To accept the gifts from the darkness. To approach life with both an understanding and acceptance of our whole selves, the pleasant and unpleasant. We must sit in silent objective observation seeking nothing only then will we find unity of good and bad, ending division and conflict to become one. Our division defines our reunification, the 10,000 conflicts are bound to returned to the one. Spinning between light and dark, the intermingling of heaven and earth, balance and harmony will always be found in the resolution of opposites.