We live in a world where duality reigns supreme. From the masculine and feminine, to the classic battle between good and evil, to light and dark, from black and white, to the core yin and yang, and even scientific negative and positive charges – this duality forms and ultimately rules our current reality. It’s the ever-seeking balance between either polarities that creates motion, and motion in any form is what creates existence.
I’d like to first define and give an understanding of how duality works at it’s basic level, and then second, to explain how to see beyond the dualist world and mindset by seeing a level “above”. In my quest of ever-understanding and being able to comprehend the merge of spiritual concepts with the realness of science and practicality, I spent a lot of time on the nature of duality and what it’s for and if it’s good or bad, etc. I hope to distill that information for you now in a simple way that’s easy to digest.
So first, what is duality? Duality is basically the interaction of opposites to create motion on various scales and levels. This is better understood by examples:
- The opposites of morality, good and evil, when interacted create drama.
- The opposites of visibility, light and dark, when interacted create varying degrees of luminosity.
- The opposites of emotion, love and fear, when interacted create ranges of emotion.
- The opposites of sexuality, masculine and feminine, when interacted create attraction and arousal.
- The opposites of magnetism, positive and negative, when interacted create motion.
- The opposites of vitality, health and sickness, when interacted create healing and disease.
While those are huge expansive concepts boiled down beyond their basics, it illustrates how the constant seeking of balance between two polarities creates, well, life.
Let me reiterate again how important this is: it’s the constant seeking of balance between two polarities that creates our lives as we know it.
Notice I didn’t say anything about resolving the balance. If there was perfect balance, there would be no motion, and without motion we wouldn’t exist. Our atoms and molecules are always moving – there’s never a time when they stop. The interaction of positive and negative is what creates motion and existence for us in this reality.
It also creates drama. I don’t necessarily mean that girl in high school that always gossips either. I mean conflict and resolution; excitement of living. That constant pull between good and bad, light and dark, sad and happy – that all creates excitement and purpose while being alive. What fun would a book or movie be if all the characters were perfect and everyone was happy and nothing happened? On the other hand, what fun would it be if everyone was miserable, sucked at everything they did, and all died sitting around doing nothing?
Let’s just say I haven’t ever seen a blockbuster with either premise.
Some stories tell about a higher power that was once all love. But when everything is everything, all knowing, and anything is possible without time or effort… this consciousness decided that in order to experience all the good, it needed to create the bad. So in order to experience love, fear was created, etc, all the way down to the protons and electrons. This duality was created so we could experience each other and create motion… and life. What else are we going to do with infinity? This duality and motion between both polarities creates an opportunity to learn – which is the purpose of it all.
Interesting way to look at things, regardless of if you agree. Who really knows, it’s just a story.
At this point, any logical person would say “Hey wait a minute, why would there purposefully be evil in the world just so we could be entertained? Or just to learn? That doesn’t sound very spiritual to me”. Valid question.
This is the really the driving force of this post, and the great talks of spiritual gurus discussing the need to move beyond duality and dualistic thinking. Most people have been trained to think very dualistically: this is either good or it’s bad, you’re either with us or against us, I’m either right or I’m wrong, etc. This approach to many things leads to a lot of unnecessary conflict and unrest within cultures and religions around the world. So much fighting and death could be avoided if people could “ascend” this dualistic mindset.
This is why we need to start thinking a level higher. This easiest way to do this, is by asking the question: “What is this an example of?” This is the magical way in which we can transcend the dualistic mindset. Again, this is best shown by example:
- Positive and negative charges are an example of: magnetism.
- Feminine and masculine are examples of: sexual energies.
- Yin and Yang are examples of: energy.
These things are really made up the same thing, just flipped. Protons and electrons are both electrical charges, they’re just opposites (I know, grand generalization). Pure masculine and pure feminine are both sexual energies, just total opposites (giving/receiving, destroying/creating). You get the point.
By being able to realize that being masculine isn’t better than being feminine (visa versa), leading isn’t better than following (visa versa), dominate isn’t better than submissive (visa versa), etc, you begin to experience the world out of judgement. Things aren’t as charged with emotional power once that person you thought was so bad isn’t really bad, they are just… being. Transcending the dualistic mindset is valuable because it shuts of the judging and opens up for accepting. Accepting things for what they are, people for who they are, and situations as just situations.
Not only that, but once there’s acceptance of all things, your possibility and empowerment levels skyrocket as nothing is given a label or attachment. Very powerful stuff.
It’s being able to say: “this isn’t good OR bad – it just IS” or even “that ethnic group isn’t evil, they’re just people”. I know, crazy concept. Even being able to accept paradoxes as “we have opposite view but we’re both right” begin to become possible once you come at ideas above the dualistic mindset.
Now the most important think to remember, is that even as you transcend the mindset, it doesn’t make duality disappear. Just like adding depth in the 3rd dimension doesn’t remove length and width, being able to transcend strict yin/yang polarities in behavior and thought doesn’t mean you should become depolarized and live asexual now. In the current reality we live in, certain dualities are still vital and power our world, so we shan’t ignore it less we live in a dimension and reality where motion ceases – but I personally don’t yet.
I think this constant push and pull between opposite polarities is what makes our world turn (literally) and the quest for balance is very important. I also think that being able to understand this game of sorts and realizing that there’s a higher level going on (it is yang, but yang is actually just energy, and so is yin – they’re the exact same thing, just switched).
I disagree with the idea of outright rejecting duality altogether. Like I said, it’s what makes our existence what it is. Without positive there would be no negative. Without the masculine there would be no feminine. Each polarity inherently needs it’s opposite to exist. Otherwise, we would have complete neutrality, or worse, non-existence.
A lot gurus teach this sort of thinking, and while it is very important and zen to simply “be” (the level above), you also live in a world where you need to do things in order to keep existing (duality). Once you know how to just be (ascended duality), the idea of doing things (duality) can be seen from a much more enlightened view. Stop rejecting, and start accepting. It’s about evolving to the next level and being able to play any or all, not saying you won’t play at the lower level at all.
As very theoretical as this topic is, it’s very applicable to everyday life once you can see where duality both helps or hinders people’s lives – even your own. Can you really see somebody as just a person, rather than a good guy or bad guy? Can you enjoy the sexual polarities of the masculine and feminine while realizing that both are equal and just as necessary? Once you can start to see above and beyond duality, once you come back to it, you can begin to play much more efficient, with more clarity, and for the better of all in the duality world.
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