We can see examples of the tension and harmony of opposites in nature around us. Examples like hard and soft, light and darkness, and hot and cold show us that opposites exist all around us. These opposites can exist in harmony with each other or their tension can give way to greater conflict.
Traditions and Cultures That Recognize These Differences
Many of us have probably heard of the yin and the yang in Chinese culture. Another example of opposites recognized is in the traditions of Hatha Yoga. In Sanskrit, the complete word "Hatha" means "forceful" and broken down "Ha" translates to "sun" and "Tha" translates to "moon" equating to Hatha Yoga being the practice of balance.
Examples of Opposites in Various Media and Research
- Rubberband- This is one of the most repeated examples I see in my research. A Rubberband is pulled in two opposite directions but eventually comes back to its original shape.
- Relationships- Movies and Books have illustrated this struggle when we feel pulled in opposite directions for various reasons.
- Decisions in general- General life experiences give us the feeling at times of being pulled in opposite directions and feeling the need to bring harmony to these different forces. Movies and books use these experiences to develop plots and characters.
Adding Some Deeper Lessons
I believe and have found there are some deeper lessons to discover in regard to the tension and harmony of opposites. Here are a few I've discovered:
- There can be two equally valuable but contrasting truths. American culture seems to have a vacuum of understanding in regard to giving equal value to contrasting truths. It seems like various teachers, etc. seem to have a hard focus on some truths while neglecting and/or devaluing other truths.
- We need to understand that different truths have their time and place in our life experiences. Hence the Biblical saying, "to everything there is a season and a time for everything under heaven." Times and seasons could be the same or vary for each individual depending on the nature of the truth or truths.
- Nature illustrates how opposites can clash when fighting for space. Tornados and hurricanes involve the forceful clashing of cold and hot air systems. Tornados develop out of thunderstorms that are already volatile. In the same way, interests and processes can clash and develop into "volatile storms" when dealing with human relationships.
- Nature also illustrates how opposites can live in harmony- When different forces mind their agreed upon time and season and/or gradually transition from one opposite to the other, harmony results. There is a regular time for the day and a regular time for the night. One slowly transitions into the other. There is a regular time for winter and a regular time for summer with fall and spring as seasons that are meant to help this harmonious transition.
- The Rubberband is a great example for us as people to harmonize opposites in our lives. All of us feel and experience the pull of opposite forces in our lives. We do not need to resist this, but acknowledging this is the first step. It is simply a normal part of our lives and being flexible enough to stretch in both directions expands us as people. The opposite of this is learning to come back to our original form or identity as an individual. We can expand our thinking, actions, etc. Without giving up our individuality.
A Personal Example
Right now I'm working on bringing all the areas of my life into harmony. One resource I've been using to create the life I want to live is Six Figure Mentors. This is a training platform that helps you build an online business. If you're interested in this resource, here is a link:
We can see examples of the tension and harmony of opposites in nature, various cultures and traditions, and various media and research. Deeper lessons we can learn in order to harmonize these opposite forces in life include acknowledging that there can be two equally valuable but contrasting truths, practicing the application of each truth in its appropriate time and season, realize and practice the gradual transition of one factor into the next through a continuum of change, understand and practice expanding our mind and experience base while at the same time maintaining the integrity of our individuality.
Can you harmonize opposite forces in your own life fairly consistently? What are some of the opposite forces in your own life and are you able to transition the tension of these opposites into their harmonious times and seasons? If no, what is your specific plan to grow and improve in this area by bringing the tension into the harmony of opposites?