We live in a stark duality, nuanced with a whole bunch of grey area.
Some of the most obvious dualities are: life and death, good and evil.
And I believe humans fall into a bell curve on all of these.
Yet I was more specifically thinking of the Yin/Yang symbol this morning.
And I’m thinking how the safest place to exist in this terrain is probably on the line that separates these fields, which I’ve denoted with a red dot.
I, personally, would like to live outside the duality of Karma, not to get away with anything, not to contradict that every action creates a reaction, but simply to live a less burdened life.
And I believe this can be achieved by being absolutely true to oneself and accepting both the rewards and the punishments life gives one without acrimony or pushback.
It is a selfish human trait to want to go through life without accepting any consequences or having any accountability for our actions. And there is a lack understanding that we have some accountability and fruits to bear for things not directly from this lifetime; brought on by ancestors, or other karmic debts/surpluses from prior to coming into this world.
I believe it is much easier to accept the grace and the wrath we encounter when we are completely at peace with our own action and thoughts, because so many of these things that happen to us are out of our control. They are set forth by the universe in a symphony far greater than our own single melody.
I’ve been thinking a lot about a story I read in one of Thich Nhat Hahn’s books about a very devout monk. One day this monk was accused of fathering a child. He was ordered to care for the child as the mother was unable to. So he took on the duty of raising this child, even though he knew it was not his. Yet he nurtured and loved this child as if it had been. (Now obviously this parable takes place in a time when this couldn’t be tested and proved.)
A year into his duty as guardian of this child, the truth surfaced and the child was then given to the actual father. And the community was stunned and asked him why he did what he did. And his response was something akin to “no one wanted this child and while I knew it wasn’t mine I also knew it needed love, guidance and acceptance and I provided that when no one else wanted to because that is what was asked of me.” This was his own moral code stepping up to play.
It’s like understanding our own thoughts and actions when it comes to legal vs moral rules. Do we not kill because we do not want to go to jail or because it is against our morality? Can we kill in self defense, even if it still goes against our religious code? Do we not covet our neighbors things because it is morally reprehensible or do we let ourselves because there is no law against it and no one to police our thoughts?
I think the more we understand our own drives and the more we are authentic in who we truly are, the easier it is to circumnavigate this world in truth and thereby also peace.
I believe we have the capacity of being so much more than we are aware of. Yet most people live these lives of “quiet desperation” going through the motions of living and not actually living, myself included here.
Yet I believe we could step into a more meaningful existence if we live our lives with so much authenticity that we can live untethered to fear; untethered to caring about the consequences. Recognizing that we as the center of our own universes have the capacity to let ourselves be free of these unnecessary burdens and fears.
And that while we will never escape living out duality in this existence, we can find purpose, love, acceptance, peace and happiness within ourselves regardless of these outside factors and Karmic occurences; by being still enough within ourselves, to see and understanding that we are here to simply find and live out our own moral codes.
Whatever those are.