It’s intriguing to me how something so bad can turn into something so good. And the reverse happens as well. Something so good can turn… really bad.
Last week, I cleaned my daughter’s room. She has been busy and stressed and I wanted to give her some kind of support. Her room was a catastrophe. It took me two entire days to clear the floors and other surfaces, and wash all of her laundry. It was a workout, which actually felt pretty good. But there were times I thought the cleaning would never end, or that it was pointless.
As her room became clean, shining and sparkling, the rewards far outweighed the work. The greatest reward was seeing her relief. She was also able to enjoy her room and that inspired new creative projects. But there was also the deeply fulfilled feeling of transforming something disastrous and overwhelming into something organized, serene, and beautiful – at least for a while.
Looking back on certain life experiences, I remember a chronic illness which turned into an exciting, challenging health routine… a lack of funds that turned into a stress-free, simple life… the passing away of my dog that turned into a soul awakening….
But there were also the happy relationships that turned into a painful breakup, dream homes that turned into a money pit, promising solutions that turned into a nightmare…. And yet, better things eventually came from those tragedies as well.
What’s happening here exactly? In metaphysics, we call this the illusion of duality. Good and bad, light and dark, appear to be opposites but are actually two sides of the same essence. They’re inherently connected. One cannot exist without the other.
This is why the awakened sage never chases good while trying to avoid the bad. The sage accepts it all equally, allowing life to go up and down however it chooses, while remaining calm, confident, and silent in the ‘center of the wheel.’
The Center within us all accepts that the glass is both half full AND half empty, and polarities do not have to be in conflict. When good and bad are both accepted but not held onto, they combine into the sum total of a deeply fulfilling, authentic life.