BEYOND THE OPPOSITES, TO THE CENTER
I neither need to be free from possessing my lover, nor free from releasing my lover, I need to go beyond possessing and releasing. I must go beyond opposites. Opposite means ‘opposing sites’, or the fighting positions. To be on one site assumes the existence of an opponent standing on the other site, brandishing a menacing sword, challenging whichever site I am standing on.
There is no peace or joy in either opposite, in fact, there is no peace or joy in the struggle to attain either side of opposites. Peace is in knowing there is an existence beyond the opposites, to know that pure, unopposed existence is at the center or my being. There is pleasure and pain in the opposites, but bliss is in the center. Bliss is neither pleasure nor pain any more than a mirror is the object it reflects. The mirror may resemble the object, whether ugly or beautiful, but the mirror at its core is neither. The mirror beholds the opposites, but is neither. My center is the mirror.
I am not success or failure, I am neither of these at the center.
I am not handsome or ugly, I am neither at the center.
I am not rich or poor, I am neither at the center.
I am not male or female, I am neither at the center.
I am not good or evil, I am neither at the center.
I am not jealousy or acceptance, I am neither at the center.
It is not about trading my vices for virtues, but about going to my center.
It is not about fighting my dark side, or about embracing my light side.
It is not about getting rid of my defects, it is about being what I am.
It is about being at the center, which is bliss.
It is not “my” bliss, it is just bliss.
Bliss is the undefined, infinite Abyss. Bliss is like contentment, but it is not contentment. It is like serenity, but it is more than, and less than serenity. Bliss is not an “it”. To call bliss serenity, contentment or “it” makes it one of the opposites. I am neither contentment nor disquiet, I am not serenity or agitation, I am not “this” or “that”. I am bliss at the center.
Life is a process of embracing, chasing, desiring, fighting for, releasing and finally relinquishing all opposites. It is a purposeful struggle, though the purpose is neither good nor bad. In the process of relinquishing, there will be a period where I think replacing one opposite with another is the goal. It is not. Both sides must be released, or must release me to my center. There will be times, countless times, when I believe I have reached the center because I feel content or serene. I have not. There will be times when I think that I have achieved the center because I can conceive of it. This is as foolish as a mountain climber thinking he has reached the summit because he has it in view.
This center is not reached by education, but by living full out. It is achieved through failure and much suffering. The safe-minded person will not find the center. The cautious man may know some security, but he will not know the center. The center is found by grabbing hold of what seems real at the moment, only to see it seep through your tightly closed fist like water. The center comes through living consciously, through doing your best and being cognizant that it is not bliss, until it is bliss.
I have an internal bliss compass always pointing me toward magnetic bliss north. I know when I am in the center. I must continue the struggle, until it is no longer a struggle. The struggle is normal and necessary. I must be aware that I am here for the struggle, that there is nothing 'wrong', and that there is a center. Even ignorance and selfish striving are normal and necessary. The struggle is not here because humans caused it by sin or ego, because our sin and ego are normal and necessary. But at some point I must wake up to the center, for ignornance of the existence of a center leaves me as an animal - eating, sleeping, reproducing and withering away.
But, what if I am taken advantage of? What if my lover cheats on me, flirts with another and is attracted to another. What if she experiences that visceral chemistry toward another object of affection? Surely she will. We all do. I have. What if the sun is hot and water is wet? Each must live in his or her opposites in order to attain the center. All relationships, from the joining of semen and ovum, to the separation of body and breath, are nothing more than objects graciously provided for Soul to experience the opposing sites that I may find the center. My job, my children, my car, my home, my books, my body, my hair, my face, my weight, my diseases, my insanities, my neighbors, my students, people on the freeway, my computer, my food – everything that I relate to sets up an opportunity for opposites.