Thursday, June 24, 2010

It's black, it's white!

Roughly the time when we start philosophising, most of us get introduced to the there's-no-such-thing-as-good-or-bad concept. It happened to me when I was in college and it remained a cool thing to say, a sign of 'being progressive', for a few years from then on. At the same time, I also remained bewilderedly confused about it. Because though the concept sounded cool, it was not my reality. Whether I liked it or not, I was putting things into 'Good' and 'Bad' boxes, almost every waking moment.

I survived that great confusion for years without any resolution. The way I used to deal with it was to greet everything with a pleasant smile on the outside, saying 'After all, everything is grey!', while in the inside, continuing to live in a state of turmoil.

I now see a lot more things as black and white. Whatever entrenches me in the illusion of separation from the source is 'bad' and whatever frees me from that illusion is 'good'. These days, when I cannot decide whether something frees me or entangles me, I don't name it gray. Instead, I leave the decision about whether to call it black or white for later.

I am more at peace with the labeling because I now realise that it is not the labeling that is bad, but two things about it. To label things based on the conditioning of our minds is madness. To develop aversion to the 'bad', and attachment to the 'good' is even more madness.

To be aware of both these madnesses and then label in equanimity not only does not entrench me in more bondage; I realise that it is quite essential to find and experience the truth.

1 comment:

Viji said...

nice article ! I have had similar thoughts but have never been able to articulate it so well...