Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Fight Between Carnival And Lent

Pieter Bruegel's painting - The Fight Between Carnival And Lent

...And Kybalion's Principle of Polarity

I see this stark contrast in human existence day in and day out. I am sure we all do.

A tavern with barely concealing curtains that reveal more than hide the merriment and the good time that its customers are having inside, with an occasional one kicked out by a bouncer for creating trouble, sits cheek-by-jowl with a Christian missionary school with its ornate place of worship, groups of nuns shuffling silently by, and with students in their oh-so-neat uniforms talking animatedly about whatever it is that they talk about. A group of Samaritans distributing packaged foods to the kids of a government primary school as their mid-day meal, it being an incentive for the parents to send their kids to the school in the first place, just half-a-kilometer away from two groups of religion-and-dogma driven people with sticks and knives in their hands, aimed at each others' neck. Rows and rows of cages holding prostitutes decked up in colorful dresses, making come-hither gestures to passers-by, just a corner away from a famous temple, with its throng of women devotees paying obeisance to the goddess inside, and swaying to the hymns blaring out of the loud-speakers.

Pieter Bruegel the Elder's painting - Land of Cockaigne

We are not discussing ethics or morality or altruism here. This is the whole gamut of human condition, as it is. Whether the tavern owner or the religious leader or the cage-owner... we all have a right to live and to be the way we are. It is the paradox of human existence. We leap to help survivors of Hurricane Katrina or the latest terrorism attack, and at the same time we don't hesitate to leap from a building top in order to take our life, when things don't pan out the way we hoped they would. We allow our minds to be inspired to achieve great things... and we also allow our minds to be inspired to commit atrocity over fellow beings.

C S Lewis

The paradox of human existence.

This paradox is very much present in our life too. Joy and ecstatic moments find somehow a counterbalance in moments of pain and suffering. Theodicists attempt to reconcile between the two opposites, and try to arrive at some golden middle.

C S Lewis Immanuel Kant

Philosophers ask us to delve into our own self and seek healing within.

Khalil Gibran

I am inclined to go along with Kybalion's Principle of Polarity, which acknowledges the duality of nature. This principle asks you to not struggle with what actually is a fact of life. Simply be aware, it says, of the two sides of any question or issue.

"Everything is Dual; everything has poles; everything has its pair of opposites; like and unlike are the same; opposites are identical in nature, but different in degree; extremes meet; all truths are but half-truths; all paradoxes may be reconciled." (The Kybalion.)

By Yves Pelletier

When we are struggling through the phases of doom and gloom, keeping this thought before us, makes the going bearable! :) And when we are enjoying those moments of bliss and joy, again keeping this thought before us allows us to keep our feet on terra firma, very, very firmly.

Khalil Gibran, 'Jesus, The Son of Man'

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