I’ve written on a couple of posts now that we live on a “plane of duality” and all I mean by that is that everything, or nearly everything, that we know in reality has an opposite, or counterpart. This is especially true in our understanding of emotions and most ideas. We all understand basic dualities. Up and down. Left and Right. Good and Bad. Happy and Unhappy. We could spend hours compiling a list of each. Everything has a counterpart. Understanding this truth of existence though has brought me a lot of power. I have found parts of myself that I would have never begun to understand without an understanding of this dual nature of the realm.
In the blog’s second post Separation: Understanding the Whole, we brought the idea into the spotlight to understand why separation was necessary in our experiences to fully understand the idea of “Whole”. This is because of their duality. The opposite, or counterpart of Separate is Whole. That means to comprehend what it means to be whole, we also have to understand what it means to be separate, and we have to learn these things at the same time because we cannot fully understand one without the other.
The relationship of a duality is special because what it means is that both of these ideas or concepts (or emotions) had to basically be learned and experienced at the same rate, or a similar rate at the very least. This is because we cannot fully understand one part of a duality without also understanding its counterpart. For example, the idea we learned as “up” is a very simple one, but to comprehend it we also have to understand the idea of “down”, without that we cannot give a clear definition. For that reason Up and Down have to be comprehended by our brain at the same time. This is because a duality is only the illusion of two separate things, when in fact, it is a singular idea.
This is made evident by another common duality: Temperature. We easily understand that temperature is the Duality of Hot and Cold. Science tells us that “cold” does not actually exist, it’s just the absence of heat. So while hot and cold are two very different things, they are actually not separate at all. This is why all dualities are actually not two separate things, but most commonly a measurement (or relationship) between two things. The two halves only exist because they are whole, a singular dual entity. They are only “separate” in that they are different measurements of the same singular thing.
Because of this both parts of all dualities are equal in importance to our human experience. We have to have both of all dualities to have a full experience. Without equal importance on all emotions, Happy, Unhappy, Anger, Peace, etc, we will not fully experience any of the true dualities. This is why, though last week I mentioned exercising happiness, it was not in an effort to run away from bad feelings, but to manifest the good feelings at the right times in our life. While practicing happiness will help us understand our power of perspective and how we shape the world around us, observing the dualities that are present in all things, and how they affect us, shows us yet another perspective, how we have been shaped by the world around us. We see the microcosm and macrocosm. Duality.
Observing, or bringing present-mindedness to, Dualities is similar to how we look at practicing happiness. Since we are now looking at dualities which are bigger than singular emotions, there is more depth to the knowledge and perspective we will receive by observing them. The way that I bring presence to, or observe, dualities is to:
- Observe the Emotion I am In
- Look inward, to the root of the emotion, and find out where it is coming from. What is the cause?
- Take note of how that same root, or stimuli, has caused me the opposite, or counterpart to that emotion. The other half of the duality.
- Feel that other emotion, simultaneously, with my current emotion.
That last step is the kicker, but it is where the growth happens. It may sound counter-intuitive but this is how we take “control” of our emotions. I hate that turn of phrase but I know it’s comprehensible. We are capable of feeling these complex emotions. In fact we probably do it nearly every day. Emotions we describe as Bitter-Sweet, or Sweet-Sorrow, similar to the feeling we get when someone who is in a lot of pain finally crosses the thresholds of death. That combined feeling of “Good” and “bad” both coming together inside of us. That is where true emotional growth happens. In these moments where we begin to feel complex emotions and take note of them in our consciousness.
That’s why the fourth step to this is so important because we are exercising our ability to comprehend more than singular emotions. We are pushing our consciousness further to experience dualities. This teaches us how to switch emotions when we need to, Not in an escapist way, but because we understand that all emotions come from similar sources, and “Bad” and “Good” are just two measurements of our collective emotion. It takes work though. we cannot hope to just be able to comprehend and catch every pattern of duality in the universe. We have to spend the time doing it, observing and finding dualities as they come to our experience.
I write observing, and presence, as if they are simple things we can simply switch into the mindset of. They are not. We have to practice to establish skills in these states of mind. We have to be able to control our observation. We have to be able to maintain present mindedness. I operate under the assumption that most of us understand these topics at least with a basic understanding because of the innumerable blogs that exist on those topics. I want to delve deeper into understanding our consciousness here, but those exercises are still important, and I am likely to write in depth on them in the future. The groundwork for thinking inwardly with this intensity has to be laid with meditation and mindfulness. We have to understand at least how our brain works, to be able to operate on its triggers, and find the roots of our emotion (a type of meditation in itself).
All this to say, it is important to strengthen our mind and consciousness-connection as much as we can so that we can better receive information directly from our consciousness. It’s important because this is the place where you store the truths about yourself. The roots of your emotions. The DNA of your soul. This is where the work of steps 3 and 4 will be done. It is important for us to be able to maintain this groundwork throughout all our practices, building them upon each other.