It is easy to look at things in absolute terms.
It’s either black or white.
Good or bad.
Light or dark.
Yet in real life things are rarely so extreme.
Our relationships, our experiences, they are all made up of a wide variety of shades of grey.
Human being are so complex.
They are almost never all good or all bad.
They can be right and wrong at the same time.
They can be helpful and hurtful in the same sentence.
Yet it is hard for us to separate out one from the other.
When we reduce our experiences to the simplest terms, we loose so much.
We loose the richness of life.
Someone can be a great artist, and still be very prejudice.
Someone else can be an amazing healer, yet they can hurt others because they have not done their own work.
And yet still we want to see people as either good or bad, not both.
This is a child’s view of the world.
This is the way we see things when we are young.
And as we grow up and experience and live more, we usually grow out of it.
We learn that life is not so simple.
That people are far more complex than we ever imagined.
We usually don’t like to see the parts of ourselves that are not so nice.
We hide from our own faults and frailties.
And because we don’t want to see all the different shades of grey within ourselves, we don’t want to see them in others.
Whether they are our business partners or our families.
Our friends or our teachers.
Everyone if far more than just black or white.
Everyone has challenges and dark sides to be integrated.
Who are we to judge?
Who are we to condemn?
Do we know another person’s heart? Or soul?
No by a long shot.
Yet when we allow ourselves to really know ourselves, warts and all, we can begin to understand others.
When we can see both the light and the dark within us, we can accept it in others.
It takes practice and a willingness to be truthful.
With ourselves first, and then about others.
It’s not easy to see the world as the complex experience it is.
Yet when we do, the subtleties and the shades of grey bring a much deeper flavor to it all.
And then life can seem beautiful in all it’s absurdity.
~ Sam Liebowitz, The Conscious Consultant