Principle 11 Negation of Opposites – Week 4 – 2022

Illustration by Rafael Edwards
Week 4:
Over the last three weeks  we considered the overall structure and general implications of the principle of the negation of opposites. We also looked at it in the contexts of the past, and the present. This week we try to focus on what it means or could mean for out future situations. 
How To Do That
How can I think about this principle in a time that hasn’t occurred yet? As I mentioned before I find the best way to approach these kind of considerations is concretely, and simply. In this case, I’ll take a look at the principle and try to discover at least one situation where applying it could make a difference in the outcome (or my understanding) of the events I foresee or fear unfolding in the future (both near and distant).  
How might I apply this principle? What consequences might arise? How might it change things? How will things play out if I ignore this principle?
Personal Reflections:
What follows are my reflections. I make no greater claim for them but offer them in the spirit of exchange and dialogue.  
I hope you find these of some use in your own meditations. I find sharing my thoughts on these themes useful because it forces me to give them some order, but of course I’m also very happy to think this sharing might help to clarify, inspire — or infuriate others — even that last can be useful. 
Last week we went over the very experience oriented work we do in our weekly meetings. This week, another way to look at “factions” and the “negation of opposites”.
As you know I’m always on the look out for jokes, stories, allegories, and so on that illustrate another aspect of, or way of looking at, the principles. So here’s a joke about point of view (so connected to the idea of factions) and some cartoons courtesy of Mani in Berlin.
The Optimist
After downing half of his glass of milk, the child declared, “I am an optimist: ‘The glass is half empty!”
“Looking at the glass as half empty is a sign of pessimism son” replied their parent. 
Smiling the child replied: “Not if you don’t like what’s in it!”
Another Exercise
Sometimes in a dream “you” appear as someone’s not your everyday self. Most commonly perhaps as “you” but older or younger  age than your current age. Maybe you’ve even been a different person, of a different ethnicity or gender. Can you recall a dream like that? Can you imagine such a situation? Certainly, you can imagine or recall being an actor and playing a part, perhaps costumed and made up to resemble someone else. Imagine playing a role that has you appear as someone of a totally different ethnicity, gender, age and disposition. No matter how perfect the makeup and costume you recognize yourself.
First, ask yourself: “who am I”. Think about that question that is so central to Silo’s Path. As he suggests there: Do not let your life pass by without asking yourself, “Who am I?” Do not let a day pass by without answering yourself about who you are. 
Look at whatever answers arise. Examine them briefly, and dispassionately, let them go. Let go of the answer, and go deeper inside. Keep asking. Obviously you aren’t simply your name, your DNA or your opinions, so as answers arise consider them, release them, and keep searching for something more. 
Now the interesting part — think of, or look at, someone you know who is very different than you. Or perhaps we better start easier and make it someone you like. Later you can try more challenging relationships. 
Now try to feel what is human in yourself and what is human in the other person trying to actually sense what is expressed in the words: “I feel what is human in me. I feel what is human in you. And I recognize that we are the same”. 
The results of doing this experiment will be quite different than the results of simply thinking about this experiment — though that wouldn’t be a bad thing either.
Photo by Rafael Edwards
The principles are simply platitudes if you don’t make the effort to transform them into something more. They are important if they can help you build a more coherent life filled with growing Peace in yourself and around you, internal Force to face life’s difficulties and the Joy of an open future.
Worth Repeating:
Odd how somehow I always seem to find myself on the side of the “angels”. Is that because of an accident of circumstance, or because of something I was born with? In either case what did I chose?
Coming up:
This week looked at how principle 11 “the negation of opposites” applied in past situations. Next week we will turn to principle 12 “accumulation action”. It says: “Contradictory and unifying acts accumulate within you. If you repeat your acts of internal unity then nothing can detain you.”  
These notes have been sent to our email list, posted on Facebook and on my website 


See you soon…