If you understand that opposing values live on a continuum, you recognize that a creative tension exists between them. There is no separation. Embracing this concept will move us away from the divisive and dualistic thinking that pervades our society towards a unified and holistic approach.
It’s not good VERSUS evil, good AND evil will always exist in order to keep society in balance. You couldn’t feel Joy without knowing Pain.
(As a side note: This is why “evil” people deserve LOVE too :) Loving unconditionally doesn’t imply approving of someone’s behaviour.)
Our societal and individual challenge is to strike a balance between all these opposites:
Community |——————–AND——————–| The Individual
Collaboration |——————–AND——————–| Competition
Feeling |——————–AND——————–| Thinking
Art |——————–AND——————–| Science
Public |——————–AND——————–| Private
Decentralized |——————–AND——————–| Centralized
Qualitative |——————–AND——————–| Quantitative
Feminine |——————–AND——————–| Masculine
Trust |——————–AND——————–| Accountability
Giving |——————–AND——————–| Receiving
Transparency |——————–AND——————–| Privacy
Generous |——————–AND——————–| Greedy
The list goes on and on.
It’s not about VERSUS anymore. It’s about AND.
As individuals we embody ALL values and traits. We are everything. Our potential as human beings is only limited by our minds. Where we find our own balance, our own centre, on each continuum is what makes us as individuals so complex, multi-dimensional and unique. As for society, it is a reflection of the individuals within it. As individuals find their own balance, so too will our society. Herein lies its brilliance.
A recent Calgary Herald poll asked:
“Which of the following does your happiness depend the most on?”
The majority of respondents answered:
“A feeling of balance in my life.”
The world is craving balance. The centre is the sweet spot, because the centre is balanced and multi-dimensional. Aiming for the centre is the path to restoring balance in our systems.
(As a side note: Striking a Balance = Prevention in Health Care)