2.3 THE DUALITY IN NATURE
THE NATURE OF DUALITY :
" Nothing can
exist without its opposite; the two were one in the
beginning and will be one in the end." .....C. G. Jung
We used to think
that if we knew one, we knew two, because one and one
are two. We are finding that we must learn a great deal more about `and'.
"Unity can only
be manifested by the Binary. Unity itself and the
idea of Unity are already two." ......Buddha
Since most of the aspects of Personal Validity are constructed in this work in terms
of paired concepts namely Personal Validity & General Validity, Physical & Non
Physical, Sensory & Non-sensory perception, Heart & Mind , Known & Unknown,
etc, it also then becomes important that an explanation be provided for this
pairing of concepts. But this pairing of concepts is far more fundamental in
human thought and conceptualization process than is commonly understood or
comprehended (there being a inherent human tendency to jump to conclusions,
one way or the other and then stubbornly stick to these for the rest of their lifespan.)
It has become fashionable to attack duality of any kind after the fad of mysticism
has prevailed over serious thought.
This attack has gained momentum with most religions becoming monotheistic, having
wiped out all traces of ancient, archaic non-rigid forms of religious conceptions.
Even this has not stopped them from being contemptuous of each other, since they
have all set up shop and businesses that have the same competitive market:
converts for popularity and clients for funds. Strange are they who in the same
breath claim unity of all reality (in God or whatever word they insist is the correct
one) and yet denounce and condemn another who is saying the same thing,
but is of a different society or culture, using a different symbolism. Their useless
and unproductive bickering never seem to cease, it only changes forms.
"You guys are both
saying the same thing. The only reason you're arguing is
because you're using different words".........S. I. Hayakawa
"Their Wise Ones
said we might have their religion, but when we tried to understand
it we found that there were too many kinds of religion among white men for us to
understand, and that scarcely any two white men agreed which was the right one
to learn. This bothered us a good deal until we saw that the white man did not take
his religion any more seriously than he did his laws, and that he kept both of them
just behind him, like Helpers, to use when they might do him good in his dealings
with strangers." (Plenty-Coups, Chief of the Crows, by Frank B. Linderman)
Competition for converts is still fierce, and instead of going directly to war, the
fight is by proxy. A lot of customers have been lost to the common perceived
enemy of all religions: science.
Science and Technology is a most formidable enemy that has taken over all
vital institutions : schools of education and learning. But what the hell, man
can't do without faith, and so the merchants of faith are smug : sooner or later
the scientists will run out of steam, and the faith business will boom again
( in Eastern cultures this business has already started picking momentum ).
Meanwhile, science and its foundations in analytic reason is easily attacked
because it is dualistic : it has to be, for in any analytic process a whole is split
firstly and most conveniently into two parts. But the quicksand in which
science is mired in, is the ridiculous attempt to find a "whole" by breaking all
matter into a single reducible equation that can describe all of reality, as
ridiculous an attempt as that of a mystic who makes sweeping statements
about reality, while at the same time insisting that no one can make
sweeping statements about reality.
scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends
like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer
the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of
theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”
One such statement that is made with total assurance by mystics is :
there is no duality in reality, or that duality is an illusion.
Without realizing that the very conception of "real" also implies something
"non-real" or "fake" or "illusory", and thus giving rise to a duality.
"Any attempt to divide
the world into portions, of which one is more
"real " than the other, is doomed to failure".....Bertrand Russel
"(In philosophy) We do not hear the sound of one hand clapping, or one
voice singing so low, or even one note sung by all voices in unison.
We hear many voices, but is it cacophony or is it harmony? I think we
hear both. Rather like a late Beethoven symphony, like the ninth.
Perhaps we haven't got to the 'ode to joy' yet, or perhaps we have left
it behind. Or perhaps, the very disharmony is the harmony, perhaps the
disagreements make up the best harmony.
But some of these differences among moral philosophers are not just
complimentary, but contradictory. Not just different emphasis or just
different dimensions or insights that could all be synthesized, but either
ors that can't be mediated. Differences that are like wars where one side
wins or the other side loses. The difference between Plato and Aristotle
maybe mainly a difference in emphasis, but the difference between Plato
and Machiavelli certainly seems to be a contradiction, and about some of
the most important questions in the world. Issues that cut to the heart and
draw blood. These philosophies are not like colors, but like night and day.
But which one is the night and which one the day? Is Machiavelli in Plato's
cave or is Plato in it and Machiavelli out in the sunlight?
Your answers to these basic questions that these philosophers ask will make
a difference to some things but everything in your life. Questions like: do we
have free will? Does life have one objectively real, ultimate end, a purpose,
meaning and greatest good? If not, what is its meaning, if so, what is it?
Is moral progress a fact, or is there moral regress? Are we happier that the
ancients or are we less? ...............TMS P. Kreeft
2.3.1 UNITY AND DUALITY/Multiplicity
is really the pathos of intellectual life, and just as only great
souls are exposed to passions, it is only the great thinker who is exposed
to what I call paradoxes.........grandiose thoughts in embryo."
"Paradox is the intellectual life's authentic pathos, and just as only great souls are
prone to passions, so only great thinkers are prone to what I call paradoxes, which
are nothing but grand thoughts still wanting completion."
.............Soren Aabye Kierkegaard
as never before is split into two apparently irreconcilable haves.
The psychological rule says that when an inner situation is not made conscious, it
happens outside as fate. That is to say that when an individual remains undivided
and does not become conscious of his inner contradictions, the world must
perforce act out the conflict, and be torn into opposite halves."....Jung
"He who confronts
the paradoxical, exposes himself to reality."
[WARNING: The material in this article is not a subject of Logic.]
There is one fundamental duality in Reality and that is:
The Temporal Reality ( of space-time process)
and the Eternal
(non-spatial and timeless)
Whereas 'The Eternal' is correctly to be conceived as
ONE or UNIFIED, the temporal is by necessity and Telos
(towards and end or purpose) NOT in a unified state but
in a state of duality/multiplicity.
Thus the terms God / Dao /
Creator / Ultimate Reality /
Objective Reality / The Absolute / Pure or Abstract Good
(Plato) etc. all refer to the same in different ways and
conceptualizations: The Eternal One.
There are very few
ideas/concepts that can be associated
with the Eternal One:
1. It is the Single Source and
Termination of the Temporal
reality of space-time.
(The point of beginning of time and end of time)
2. It is the timeless essence or real substance underlying
all things and beings in temporal reality, that is, this
essence itself is neither created nor destroyed.
"I played with an
idea, and grew willful; tossed it into the air; transformed it;
let it escape and recaptured it; made it iridescent with fancy, and winged
it with paradox.",,,,,,,,,,,Oscar Wilde
In this work it is readily accepted that ultimate reality is one in its nature, that its source,
sustenance and termination can be conceived as a singular unitary entity that is absolute
and independent of the space-time axis, also conceptualized in various ways by different
But in the process of life and death, creation and destruction, in the existence of beings
in time and space, this unity is split-manifest as a multitude of a duality of opposites or
counterparts, the beings themselves are the myriad manifestations, sub-entities, of
this whole. The whole can also be conceived as an entity that is the sum of all sub
entities of its creation, with the understanding that the whole is more than
just the sum of its parts.
( The concept of the primordial, supreme Being or God or conceptualized/symbolized as
Dao, Soul etc, and the active principle in time as Spirit( or Holy Spirit), De, Chi, Power etc.)
In this work, the Self, though no doubt a part of the whole is considered as the central
focal aspect of existence, as an entity that has the unlimited capacity for experiencing,
but limited capacity for understanding and conceptualizing, whose purpose is also
to be self-sought and self-defined.
It is however emphasized in this work that the overall purpose of a distinct entity
( or so presumed), the Self, has the general goal of first discovering, knowing and
seeing into one's own unique nature and capabilities, and then of creativity of
expression and communication. This aspect of creative expression is very easily
overlooked by the protagonists and propagators of monisms and mysticisms.
"To confront a person
with his shadow is to show him his own light.
Once one has experienced a few times what it is like to stand judgingly
between the opposites, one begins to understand what is meant by the self.
Anyone who perceives his shadow and his light simultaneously sees
himself from two sides and thus gets in the middle"...Jung
It is worthwhile to point out here that any creativity takes place as the resultant of
a tension or conflict of opposing elements of a pair of counterparts that terminates
in something creative (or destructive in case the opposing elements fail to resolve
and compliment each other). This is the fundamental process underlying in all
cycles of creation and dissolution or destruction.
"There is no
consciousness without discrimination of opposites. This is the
paternal principle, the Logos, which eternally struggles to extricate itself
from the primal warmth and primal darkness of the maternal womb ; in a
word, from unconsciousness. Divine curiosity yearns to be born, and does
not shrink from conflict, suffering or sin. Unconsciousness is the primal
sin, evil itself for the Logos." ......C. G. Jung
out of the tension between spontaneity and limitations,
the latter (like the river banks) forcing the spontaneity into the various
forms which are essential to the work of art or poem".....Rollo May
This fundamental truth applies to everything in the existential domain of the
time-space axis and particularly so within one's own self whereby every conflict,
irritant or tension of opposing elements within oneself is indicative of a
impending breakthrough or breakdown.
"Every creative person
is a duality or synthesis of contradictory aptitudes.
On the one side he is a human being with a personal life, while on the other
side he is an impersonal, creative process - even inhuman, for as an artist
he is his work and not a human being.".........C G Jung
It is the fear of breakdown that makes most people run for cover or to escape the
situation by suppressing the conflict by physiological means, i.e., drugs, or by other
means like meditation or philosophy or psychotherapy. Most people fail to realize
that not to take a conflict head on is to squander an opportunity that nature is
offering for a creative break through in which one can gain an invaluable control
over one's sub-conscious.
"Too much attention to health is
a hindrance to learning, to invention, and
to studies of any kind"....Sylvia Plath
Most people only prefer a comatose state of happiness and so - called experienced
unity of self with the One, or an experienced dissolution of Self and identity,
claiming to be 'with the flow' of reality.
"A successful work of
art is not one which resolves contradictions in a
spurious harmony, but one which expresses the idea of harmony
negatively by embodying the contradictions, pure and uncompromised,
in its innermost structure".....Theodor W. Adorno
WEB Inter. 2013:-
Attempts at proof are exercises in logical reasoning which works in
linear time and temporal reality, and will not work in the non-linear or timeless realm.
Logic is applicable only in linear time, not in non-linear time and definitely not when
talking about Eternity, Infinity, etc. In artistic use of language ( poetry, rhetoric)
all potentialities are open.
And since God is not an entity/thing/force in space - time existential temporality, it
cannot be proven to 'exist'. 'Existence' implies 'spacio-temporalality' (time-space),
which is the counterpart of the Eternal.
If you want to insist upon logical arguments/reasoning then you have to throw out concepts
of Eternity, Infinity, God, Spirit etc because any use of such concepts in a logical framework
lead to absurdities and paradoxes that cannot be resolved logically (these are logic defying
concepts). ( Also refer to Godel's work. Also check BBC documentary - Dangerous Knowledge)
I hope this explains the 'because', as I have tried to point out by reasoning that there are limits
of logic and reason itself. And that is why we have the 'gift' (Einstein) of the counter-process of
reason - which is intuition or synthesis, but which cannot result in direct expressions in
One such paradox: Is the
temporal and the eternal separate?
Yes these are distinct realms from each other and No: because
in a living being like humans these are not separate realms,
Let me put it this way: Eternity is not 'separate' from Time but
integral to it. God is in one sense 'separate' from his creation,
yet an integral part of the created beings through Spirit.
Anselm's argument is a tautology - nothing additional is revealed. just the premises are restated
in a clever way. All attempts to prove God/Creator will fail simply because the creator of existence
of space-time itself is not within this space-time temporal existence, but is the presumed primordial
cause/transcendent cause, and therefore of the Eternal realm, best conceived as the Eternal One
- that is - a unity of the essence of everything/every-being in the timeless realm. Such a unified and
timeless essence is at best experienced and intuited, and cannot be proven or established by
logic/science/linear thought. God is not an existential entity in temporal reality ( time-space
Universe), but a Unitary entity in Eternity, not part of the physical cosmos nor reflected in the
physical, and therefore properly speaking 'God Does NOT EXIST', and therefore
cannot be proven to exist.
2.3.2 THE EXPERIENCE of UNITY
While it is true that in the realm of experience, the experience of this inherent ultimate
unity is undoubtedly one of the highest quality of experiences, it is also an undeniable
truth that life does not dwell in experience alone, and to try to do so may be a form of
escapism from the difficult challenges of life, and definitely so in case one tries to
induce others to follow suit. One of the serious pitfalls of certain intense experiences
is that the subject or person having the experience has a strong tendency to jump to
hard and fast conclusions about reality as a result of the interpretation of the intense
experience. These conclusions become hard and fast beliefs that are then never even
questioned for their applicability or usefulness in an ever changing world.
Thus the experience of ‘Unity’ in which the individual consciousness dissolves or
merges with the universal consciousness does not automatically mean that this
becomes an absolute belief to be propagated – objective reality doesn’t allow for
subjective experiences to be imposed over every other being for it
defeats the purpose of creation itself!
"I believe that drugs
are basically of more use to the audience than to the artist.
I think that the illusion of oneness with the universe, and absorption with the
significance of every object in your environment, and the pervasive aura of
peace and contentment is not the ideal state for an artist. It tranquilizes the
creative personality, which thrives on conflict and on the clash and ferment of
ideas. The artist's transcendence must be within his own work; he should not
impose any artificial barriers between himself and the mainspring of his
subconscious. One of the things that's turned me against LSD is that all the
people I know who use it have a peculiar inability to distinguish between
things that are really interesting and stimulating and things that
appear to be so in the state of universal bliss that the drug induces
on a "good" trip. They seem to completely lose their critical faculties
and disengage themselves from some of the most stimulating areas
of life. Perhaps when everything is beautiful, nothing is beautiful."
2.3.3 DUALITY and PARADOX
"If neurotic is wanting two
mutually exclusive things at one and the
same time, then I'm neurotic as hell. I'll be flying back and forth between
one mutually exclusive thing and another for the rest of my days."
"The art of progress is to
preserve order amid change and to preserve
change amid order".......A. N. Whitehead
"Now that we have met with
paradox we have some hope of making
progress." - Niels Bohr
To accept a responsibility towards one's society and environment is so easily overlooked
by people who espouse and tout a particular experience as the ultimate goal of all of
life, oblivious to the invariably degenerating conditions around them. They invariably
deny a very fundamental truth of all existence :
Everything that exists in time and space has properties and attributes that have
counter parts. In perception, every conception has also a counter-concept that
validates it. For the half truth of every belief there is also a counter-belief that
validates the other half truth. But this does not imply that the two half truths
by themselves constitute the whole truth. The "truth" is a condition of a being
in a given situation and time : a reflection of the accuracy of belief, whereas
goodness is the aesthetic appeal of that belief in action or expression in
relation to other beings. A belief, in itself, is nothing.
"Two half truths do
not make a truth, and two half cultures do not make
a culture"......Arthur Koestler
"I believe that truth
has only one face: that of a violent contradiction."
"A great truth is
a truth whose opposite is also a great truth."
"A third cause of
the decline in religious wars seems to be eminently applicable
to philosophies and ethics. In fact, religion learned it from philosophy. It is
simply the art of dialog, the art of listening. Passionate but polite conversation.
Learning from each other, even when we deeply disagree. Demanding a deeper
understanding of the other side before judging the other side, before judging or
acting. Suppose you do this. Then what happens is that you become a test case
for humanity: you learn from all other thinkers even when they contradict each
other. And each one of them had learned from his predecessors with whom he
disagreed. It began with Socrates more than with anyone else. If someone sees
farther than our predecessors it is only because we have their shoulders to stand
on. So at the very least, an opposing philosophy helps you to appreciate and
define your own philosophy by contrast. For instance, Sartre's and Nietzsche's
consistent atheism can powerfully help the theists to appreciate their theism.
You put muscle on only if you box with strong sparring partners.
The union of contradictory ideas does in fact happen. The synthesis of logically
un-synthesizable ideas, the reconciliation of the logically irreconcilable happens
in your mind - in a single human mind. In objective fact one is false but in your
subjective mind, both are, both live, because you the person, the subject are not
just a subjective idea or an object. You are not a physical object, a thing, and you
are not a mental object - an idea. You are what Sartre called being for itself, not a
being in itself. You have dimensions the world simply does not have, and
dimensions that no idea has. No idea can think. You can. No idea can change
(by itself), but you can change.
This does not violate the law of non-contradiction, but it adds a temporal
dimension to it. Just as two bodies cannot occupy the same space at the
same time, but they can at different time. So two contradictory ideas cannot
both be true at the same time, but they can at different times.
......TMS P. Kreeft
if well understood and managed can spark off the
fires of invention. Orthodoxy, whether of the right or of the left is
the graveyard of creativity."...... Chinua Achebe
It should be clear to anyone of some intelligence that a singular unitary undifferentiated
entity cannot exist in time and space without reference to anything else. So for there to be
existence of anything at all in time and space, it has to be in contrast to something else.
" It's like the new world order
cannot tolerate even a little bit of opposition.
It's my view that systems of power connected to systems of value tend
to spread so as to become total. In other words they tend to fill up the
total field of discourse within which we discuss the moral. This is well
known about religions. This helps to account for religious wars. The
principle of tolerance is not built into people who have that kind of
insight into a truth."
…..Rick Roderick ( TTC – Philosophy and Human Values)
"We have to steer down the middle of each road. Both sides of the road
have ditches to fall into. For every virtue, there are two opposite vices.
Courage is the mean between too much fear - which is cowardice, and
too little fear - which is recklessness. Justice is a mean between
giving more or less than what is deserved. Temperance or moderation
is a mean between being too sensitive and being too insensitive to
pleasure and pain. Modesty is a mean between shamelessness and
bashfulness. Wit is a mean between boorishness and buffoonery.
Friendliness is a mean between quarrelsomeness and flattery. Righteous
indignation is a mean between irascibility and insensitivity - too short a
fuse and too slow a fuse. Pride is a mean between vanity and false humility.
When Aristotle calls pride a virtue, he is not talking the same thing as what
Christian theology calls pride as one of the seven deadly sins - that is either
competitive pride or put down pride or pride against god. Aristotle means
proper self respect, proper self-love which Jesus actually appealed to as
a good thing - his golden rule: to love others as you love yourself.
I once gave one of my students an A for a one sentence essay on Aristotle.
The title was : A logical critique of Aristotle's doctrine of the golden mean.
The sentence was: I think it is a good idea but Aristotle carries it to an
In other words : don't we need a little extremism somewhere too? Isn't
Aristotle moderate to excess? A little too controlled, too rational ?
What about some wildness ? What about love ? Aquinas also questions
whether every virtue is a mean between two extremes. He says no: there
are three that are not: faith, hope and love.
Aquinas adds another dimension to human life than Aristotle had: the
vertical or supernatural dimension. In that dimension there is an infinite
object: a God who is infinitely good and infinitely lovable. You can love
a finite good too much, but you can't love an infinite good too much.
..................TMS P. Kreeft
the idea of balance always sounds good, it doesn’t capture the dynamic
nature of what it means to actually achieve balance. Our mental image of balance
is somewhat distorted because we tend to equate it with stillness—the calm
repose of a yogi balancing on one leg, a state without apparent motion. To my mind,
the more accurate examples of balance come from sports, such as when a basketball
player spins around a defender, a running back bursts through the line of scrimmage,
or a surfer catches a wave. All of these are extremely dynamic responses to
rapidly changing environments." Ed Catmull
2.3.4 MULTIPLICITY OF DUALITIES
Meaning, that in the realm of existence, a singular unitary entity ceases to exist in a
unitary state and thus splits itself in a space time axis initially into two and then
from those two into further and further elements. This does not mean that it does
not retain its unitary nature. It only means that in time and space its existence is
manifest in a differentiated form of an existential and process multiplicity of
dualities. One clear example is time and space itself : Time cannot exist without
space and space cannot exist without time, and thus are true counterparts of
Thus the space-time axis (existential reality) is itself a counterpart of the
eternal (ultimate or absolute reality).
Thus the temporal and the eternal are true counterparts.
Thus the finite and the infinite are true counterparts.
The Spirit is both the active principle of the eternal in temporal reality,
as well as transcending into eternity, and therefore is absolutely
paradoxical from every aspect - it is objective reality because it
transcends the here and now, and yet it is purely subjective action
in the here and now - in a living being in space and time.
True counterparts are those that together make up the whole, either
is incomplete without the other. Only in the intercourse between them,
is something created, just like only between a man and a woman a
child is born.
True counterparts are those that compliment as well as oppose each
other. The opposition(or contrasting natures) between them generate
the necessary tension or energy for creativity.
2.3.5 THE CONVERGENCE OF DUALITIES
The multiplicity of dualities however myriad and seemingly infinite they may be,
converge to bring into existence an individual consciousness - a living being.
"A human being is a
synthesis of the finite and the infinite, of the
temporal and the eternal, of necessity and freedom."
And so also gives rise to the individual being in time-space existence
or the Self. This concept of a limited autonomous being is not only vital for
this work of Personal Validity, it is a concept that is central to any life and
existence, because it is from the concept of an autonomous individual
that we can further conceive of Will, morals (choice of Right and Wrong),
responsibility, meaning, purpose, goals and potential.
"Both sides of the
equation: meaning and absurdity are equally fundamental and
fully real in themselves and that neither one can be dismissed or subordinated
in relation to the other. The third alternative then is to commit oneself to the
tension between meaning and absurdity on human existence as a genuine question,
which realistically must be asked and continue to be asked as the essential
characteristic of the human condition. Such a commitment to questioning requires
a recognition and acceptance of mystery as the most fundamental condition of
human existence in relation to reality as a whole. Mystery is the natural environment
of the human condition of being in question. Without mystery there are no real questions
– only unsolved problems – questions that are waiting for answers not questions that
can and must be lived today, tomorrow and always. Mystery and the human commitment
to questioning belong together absolutely from beginning to end and from which
freedom and the possibility of responsibility originate." ---TTC : Prof Ambrosio
Day does not exist through itself, night does not exist through itself. The
exists through itself is day and night. So the reality is meaning and absurdity. ~Carl Jung,
To deny this central concept of the individual in the existential domain
is the trap that most monotheistic religions or monistic philosophies
fall into, and induce others to do so by proclaiming that experience of
unity with "ultimate reality" is the only purpose of existence, rest all is
an illusory duality.
denies his or her own power, identifies self-interest
with the design of Providence, and pretends that this is the best of all
possible worlds. Such a pose serves to deny feelings of hopelessness,
makes the pain of disappointment more bearable, and brings a false sense
of order to a chaotic life situation. (But ) The cost is high and unforeseen.
These same defenses impoverish the possibilities for personal and spiritual
growth that unfettered imagination and later life experiences might provide.
Pseudo-innocence requires wearing the blinders of denial. By making
powerlessness into a seeming virtue, such a person acts as though
God watches over the weak and the naive"......Sheldon Kopp
They shut themselves out not only from nature and one's own nature but
also the social reality and its responsibilities.
"It is easy to answer the
ultimate questions -- it saves you bothering
with the immediate ones.".....John Osborne
" An explorer operating at these depths cannot afford such childish baggage. These
are disguises of and evasions of the ultimate dissolution of self ; the maintenance
of pleasure and of life are insisting on denial of death. If one stops at these beliefs,
no progress in further analysis can be made. These beliefs are analysis dissolvers.
One might call these lazy assumptions which prevent one from pushing deeper into
self and avoid expending any great effort in this deeper direction. One of these very
powerful evasions is an hedonistic acceptance of things as they are with conversion
of most of them to a pleasant glow. Another similar evasion is deferring discussion
of such basic issues until one's life after death. ".......John C Lilly
This work thus assumes that a duality is inherent in nature, not only in
our thought, and in our perception, but also it is manifest in all of
existential reality, even though there is no
duality in ultimate reality.
But life does not exist in ultimate reality.
outside my window here.
Naked, umbrageous, fresh or sere,
Has neither chance nor will be
Anything but a linden tree,
Even if its branches grew to span
The continent ; for nature's plan
Insists that infinite extension
Shall create no new dimension.
From the first snuggling of the seed
In earth, a branchy form's decreed.
2.3.6 DUALITY IN CONCEPTUALIZATION
promotes the growth of consciousness as [the] inner
confrontation of opposites.” ~Carl Jung
"That man is a
creature who needs order yet yearns for change is the
creative contradiction at the heart of the laws which structure his
conformity and define his deviancy.".....Freda Adler
"I try to deal
honestly and directly with reality in my art and that reality
encompasses both ugliness and beauty.".....Robert Haozous
(Apache/Navajo) (Houser and Haozous: A Sculptural Retrospective)
The individual's consciousness upon birth again takes a divergence in the very
process of life, and in acquiring and learning concepts, in being made to believe
about things and entities. In the very process of life our perception makes
differentiations and classifications in order to function ( for example, at the
most elementary level, between pain and pleasure ).
Why do we perceive only some aspects of anything that thus have counter
aspects that we tend to ignore? What stops us from perception in its totality ?
The general answer to these questions is: the process of life and living has
the inbuilt function of survival that generates the working rules that filter
the perception of a living being, and thus gives rise to a differentiation .
individual's conscious attitudes, the exact opposites exist in
his or her unconscious. The more extreme and seemingly pure the conscious
pose, the more energy it will take to contain its exactly equivalent counterpart
and the greater danger that sometime unexpectedly the denied impulse may
break loose in full savagery. Being on our own, each of us must take the
personal responsibility of coming to know the wolf within or we risk
becoming the lamb that ( leads ) slaughters the rest of the flock".
generally causes reaction, and produces a change in the opposite
direction, whether it be in the seasons, or in individuals, or in governments.”
The particular answer for an individual being lies on the path of a personal
journey of self exploration with the twin aspects of self analysis and self
synthesis that this work tries to support .
All phenomena, objects and beings exhibit characteristics or properties that
manifest themselves in pairs which are opposites or contrary or reflections
of each other in the eyes or the perception of the observer .
These twin properties or manifestations of an object, being or phenomena are
analogous to the Chinese twin concepts of Yin and Yang .
Unless the observer's perception is observing the totality of the observed
phenomena (which at best is a synthesized spontaneity, and yet not always, because
some occasions call for an rigorous analytic response), he/she will at a certain
time only be perceiving only one of the two twins, although at another time
and circumstance , the other twin may be perceived and the first one disappears
or is not perceived .
The same or similar phenomena , observed in a different context or from a different
point of view will generate another twin different from the earlier twins, lets say
a Yin2 and Yang2.
There may thus be an infinite number of ways in which an observer perceives
something , but each way will divulge a twin : a Yin of that way and the Yang
of that way.
One of the fundamental duality is that of the nature of the mode of perception:
a synthesized perception (yin) or an analytic perception (yang).
( see Heart and Mind: The two Paths of Knowledge)
Although all Yin's and their corresponding Yang's are by nature twins and therefore
should be of equal stature in the eyes of the beholder , this is usually not so and one
of the two invariably dominates to the extent that the beholder may not be even
aware of the other.
This happens so because the twins have at least one property that manifests in opposite
form from one to the other . Lets say that if one of the two is white , the other must be
black , however if both are of the same color then one is ugly and the other attractive,
and again if both look the same , one is docile and the other aggressive .. and so on...
For almost surely the Father ( the beholder of the perception ) of the twins will not
treat them equally if he has a preference for a feature dominant in one of the two.
The feature that is preferred becomes the sought after and its opposite is avoided
in a behavior pattern that increasingly becomes reinforced and automatic to the
extent that it even becomes part of the sub-conscious operation.
The preferred becomes more and more reinforced in its value and frequency of
operation, and its opposite becomes of lesser and lesser value,
even negative value ( avoidance reaction).
Thus the filters in the eyes of the beholder will automatically accept or reject the
Yin's or Yang's , and thus perception is mostly a function of the existing filters
or preferences that the beholder has learned or acquired rather than primarily
being the function of validity indicated by elements within the concurrent
Thus choices and behavior patterns of a person who does not consciously and
continuously examine them critically, eventually become fixed and automotive
patterns of behavior that operate unchanged throughout the lifetime of the person,
unless a crisis provokes a critical condition that forces a revaluation.
" The unexamined life
is not worth living"......Socrates
2.3.7 UNITY OF ONESELF
It must be pointed out here that most people prefer a stable, even if fixed system of
thinking and living, since to continuously examine, experiment and re-evaluate one's
operating preferences and beliefs is very arduous, risky as well as physiologically
But to a person with an inherent compulsion to do so, has also its benefits in terms
of comprehension and control to the point where the complete potential of one's
existence is realized, and one gets to the totality or unity of oneself.
In the totality or unity of perception , not only the duality of perception diminishes,
but more importantly, the validity of each perceptual mode is realized and becomes
available to the command of one's Will. What this generally means is that the Will
of the being is able to have much greater command and control over the
processes, faculties and resources of the being.
( WARNING : But not in an absolute sense. )
The mode that is generally most useful is the one in which the perceiver or the
observer and the perceived or the observed seemingly merge and become one.
(Synthesized in perception, and thus the indicated mode of synthesis)
That is, the sharp distinctions between observer and observed, subject and
object, tend to dissolve and whereby the object/s of perception tend to become
subject or under control of the will of the observer, rather than the other
"You've got a song
you're singing from your gut, you want that audience
to feel it in their gut. And you've got to make them think that you're one
of them sitting out there with them too. They've got to be able to relate
to what you're doing".....Johnny Cash
( WARNING : Again, it does not mean the complete and total merger of a
being's perception with all observable objects in the field of perception,
but only in a selective sense.)
To arrive at the unity of oneself also does not mean dissolution of the self,
( although an " experience " of the dissolution of self may result, an actual
dissolution of the self takes place only on death. )
THE CONCLUSION :
The unity of oneself is a condition of having attained a degree of
control over one's faculties as well as a certain realization of one's
own nature and its direction ( Will ). It does not imply a complete
merger of inherent dualities or ideas like "subject" and "object".
The only thing that any living being is a "subject" of is Nature, and
all "objects" are nothing else but elements of the perception of a
living being that act upon or affect the perception or are acted
upon by other elements of perception.
for more on the "subject" & "object" confusions
go to this
"object" : sobject.htm ( Supplimentary Article)
Even in the unity and totality of perception does not mean that an element
of reality will be uniformly perceived by every being although the essence of
certain aspects can be agreed upon, depending upon the exigencies and
purpose of the agreement.
What this implies is that even in the totality of perception there
is the uniqueness of experience that is unique and different for unique and
distinct beings. This uniqueness of experience and its expressions, especially
in artistic form is the hallmark of a true individual. It is this individuality
and the uniqueness of experience and its expressions that this work
"Is our existence
a brute fact to be dealt with or a gift to be accepted
in a spirit of thankfulness? Suggesting his own alternative, Marcel
remarks that the materiality of the tree root and his own existence
is experienced by Sartre not as overabundance of being but as
fundamental and absurd. Marcel on the contrary would experience it
as a marvelous superabundance of being and an arresting instance
of the ancient Platonic principle that the good tends to diffuse itself
like a love that insists on being communicated or an experience of
beauty that demands to be shared."......Thomas Flynn
While the experience of the dissolution of the self of a being is an important one
and also useful ( but not necessarily so, because such experiences also have a
tendency to lead to one sided conclusions about reality ) for the purpose of gaining
insight into the nature of reality, therefore, once again a warning is in order here
and that is : In an ecosystem of diverse and unique beings, for everyone to exist
in a state of unified consciousness is as good as there being no existence at all.
( Such a condition itself implies the dissolution of the world in
which the beings exist. )
Ultimately if the full potential of being human is achieved by the collective
human race, such a total unification of all beings can become a possibility
and consequently the dissolution of the world takes place,
rather than destruction.
"The last sound on the
worthless earth will be two human beings trying to launch a
homemade spaceship and already quarrelling about where they are going next."
........ William Faulkner
In the realm of life, like it or not, as diverse beings, we are pitted against
each other to conflict as well as cooperate, and the test of our existence
is how we manage both, so the only choice we have is either of creative
conflict-cooperation or a destructive conflict- cooperation.
( the destructive one of course takes place in ignorance and denial or
the deception of taking it as inevitable.)
Thus one fundamentally valid duality is there between an individual being
( "subject" is a mis-term in this sense) and the socially objectified and
imposed norms of being.
self-realization, a rebel demands a strong authority, a worthy opponent,
( like ) God to his Lucifer".........Mary McCarthy
"The greater the
contrast, the greater the potential. Great energy only comes
from a correspondingly great tension of opposites." - Carl Jung
This article on unity and duality was an anchor on which the further articles
are based. The reader having a strong aversion to duality of any kind is
most likely going to find the next one even more difficult to digest. But in
this work, the following articles are prerequisites to the main section.
NEXT PAGE 07 : 2.4 Perception
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