Duality in All Things
I’ve heard before that anger is only fear manifesting itself through judgement. I believe this is true. In the same way, sorrow is merely an expression of love. As with all things that we can experience on earth, this is an extension of one of the basic laws of life — every action has an equal and opposite reaction.
I’m current in the process of coming to terms with the end of a long relationship. It has been a challenge to maintain not just happiness, but stability and self-worth throughout; the relationship was a mess of codependency and jealousy, and while it was not healthy, it was comfortable. In order to move on with life, however, one needs to break out of his or her comfort zone and experience something new. The comfort of my relationship was preventing me from progressing emotionally — I was not feeling vital emotions, because they were uncomfortable, and I could avoid it. Without pain, though, there can be no pleasure; it is necessary to confront your own duality in order to realize the true depth of your emotions. My relationship did not teach me this — the breakup, however, required me to learn it.
I’ve come to the point now where, in retrospect, I’m able to look objectively upon my emotions, and understand them for what they are. I am sad about the breakup. I feel sorrow and pain, and longing for the comfort that I used to take in my life’s stability. But I am still able to feel happiness and joy — I just had not been able to understand that one cannot exist without the other. Meditation and reflection have helped me to understand that my awareness of my ability to feel both pain and happiness is the root of my ability to love — love is the balance of sorrow and joy. And while much of my current sorrow comes from the pain that a breakup causes, sorrow can exist without a breakup — without my ex. Similarly, while much of my love was directed into the relationship, I have the ability to love outside of my ex — I have love for my friends, for my family, and for what I do on a day to day basis. By being aware of the fact that my emotions are under my control, and not the reverse, I can isolate them from their circumstances and come to terms with their presence outside the scenarios that cause them. And by removing the idea that my ex girlfriend is the only one who can provide me with those feelings, I’m able to love completely outside of her presence.
A quote came to me in the midst of my meditations last night:
I understand that there are things which I can control, and that there are things that I cannot. I promise to use my control to better those around me, and to make the best of those things that I cannot control, as they will make me a stronger, better person.
Sometimes, in order to regain control, you must first surrender to it. Experience your emotions fully, and do not shy away from those that make you uncomfortable — but know that you will only be at peace when you understand where your emotions come from, and when you are able to experience them without an exterior motivator. Only you can choose how you feel.