… the paradox is one of our most valued spiritual possessions…only the paradox comes anywhere near to comprehending the fullness of life. – Carl Jung
Did you know there’s no one kind of tea that suits everyone’s fancy? Mint comes closest to being a crowd pleaser, I reckon. Still, it’s not for everyone. Nothing is.
There are countless ways to do life. And part of us knows this but it’s usually not a large enough percentage to equate to understanding on a deep enough level to make even a small dent in our delusions about such things.
There’s a persistent tickle whisper of a voice that serenades us, singing songs of fabled sameness to a shuttering detriment.
It’s worth us getting this one corrected.
We’re all one and We’re all the same are true only so much that it doesn’t interfere with another solid truth: the one about how we are all different.
Too often, we apply the lens of sameness in times when the lens of different-ness should be used. We get stuck in trite twirlings, insisting: This tea is sooo freakin good, you’re going to LOVE it! You HAVE HAVE HAVE to try it!! And if it turns out that said person who was supposed to love it does not, in fact, love it, well then clearly something is amiss with said person. Clearly their taste is flawed or their senses dulled from a sinus infection they don’t know they have or their pallet so under-developed they wouldn’t know good tea if it walked up to them like Bigfoot in the forest and said hello. Clearly, they are wrong.
For those of you who haven’t read my most recent posts, you may be surprised to know that the picture above (taken yesterday) is of a person (me) who has been home sick for the past 7 days. I haven’t eaten a full meal and have only left the house to fetch the mail since last Friday. I have no appetite and am mostly bed bound, as sitting upright is taxing and uncomfortable after only a short period of time. I even did a short stint in the ER on Saturday, due to having a fever, weakness to the point of not being able to walk on my own, and belly pain.
Why am I telling you this? Well, I think this is a pretty good real-life example of what the heck the teachings of non-duality are all about.
It’s easy to look at this pic of me and think I look totally healthy and without cause for hardship. It’s easy to look at this pic and be totally surprised to find out that I’m barely able to get out of bed. We all get caught in dualistic thinking on the daily. Meaning, we don’t think two things can operate at the same time. Things either have to be this way OR that way. That’s what dualistic thinking is all about.
Non-dualistic thinking, on the other hand, involves being able to hold two seemingly opposing realities at the same time, allowing them to co-exist together as two parts of the same reality.
In this case, being able to accept and rest in a state of non-duality equates to seeing that both of these things are true: I am sick and not feeling physically well AND I’m able to smile brightly and keep a positive outlook and attitude. I am both sick and happy at the same time!
The more able we are to sit with ease in relation to life’s many paradoxes, the more content we will be as a result. The more we fight against them or attempt to figure them out intellectually, the more we will suffer.
It’s like two of my very favorite teachings say: