Two Sides Of The Same Coin
Updated: Jan 3, 2020
There is no life without death, no happiness without sadness, no success without failure, no heaven without hell.
They are all essentially two sides of the same coin; you can’t have one without the other, that’s just the way it is.
There are these dualities in life you need to be able to contend with – it’s an essential concept that goes straight to the heart of everything you experience.
If you want to get a deeper (and fuller) understanding of life, then it’s a concept that you simply can't ignore and would be well served by exploring closely.
It represents one of the most profound building blocks in forming a worldview that will allow you to navigate your life in a way that deals intimately with reality.
Duality suggests that every aspect of your life is generated from a balanced interaction between two opposing forces, not necessarily opposites, but rather complimentary forces.
They are essential to one another; they don’t cancel each other, but rather provide the balance necessary for things to even be possible.
In essence, you can’t fully grasp and experience one side of the dual nature of anything, without fully understanding it’s opposing side.
Experiencing death is what you need to know what it means to be truly alive.
The deeper your sorrow, the greater your joy.
The more difficult the struggle, the greater the satisfaction in overcoming it
It's one side that gives rise to the other, happiness would lose it's very meaning if it were not balanced by sadness.
Although we often view life as a linear straight line, the reality is, it’s not.
There’s no forward without back, no up without down, no hot without cold.
Experience tells me that many of the breakdowns begin to occur when you try so hard to embrace one, whilst desperately trying to avoid the other.
You want so much to experience the victory, but you want to avoid defeat at all costs.
It doesn’t work that way.
There is inherent risk of defeat, if you’re going for that victory, not to mention the victory is also so much sweeter when you know what defeat tastes like.
But more profoundly, there is no victory without the possibility of defeat.
This duality (or yin and yang) is the underpinning of all interactions in nature and life.
It’s what gives your life balance.
Even in a perceived state of pure Zen, you'll most likely find duelling opposing forces bubbling underneath the surface.
The battle between emotion and reason
Focus and distraction
Discipline and temptation
And so it goes on.
The lesson is really in learning to understand this duality better and rather than trying to embrace one half, whilst trying to avoid the other - get a grasp of both and learn how to flow between the two more skilfully.
After all, you need two halves to make a whole.
This will ultimately give you a much fuller experience of life and is what true balance actually looks like.