In the past couple of years I have been struggling on these two thoughts. When I have moments of quietness, I think about these two things, dichotomies and values. These two things are one of the most underlying drivers of our thoughts, actions, and even habits. Take a second here and explore with me about the concept of dichotomies. By definition, dichotomy is the segregation or separation of two things in order to compare and contrast. We use it in context of, "You can get with this, or you can get with that." We use to it in the context of good or bad, right or wrong, and winning or losing. Often times when speaking about dichotomies we use the terminology of 'versus', suggesting that the two things we are comparing and contrasting is virtually against each other and never and mix. Like of the term, "like oil and water."
In my own experience I can recall learning dichotomies from my parents and teachers. I remember clearly mom yelling at the top of her lungs, "Don't eat that! That's bad! Here's an apple, this is good!" I even remember all the lessons of what is right, and what is wrong. She probably will remind me after reading this that I may have forgotten some of those lessons (oops). In fact, recalling these memories up until this moment, I realize that we as human beings, or maybe just in my personal interactions in my life, utilize dichotomies as a way for us to define, understand, and teach. We, teachers, mothers, fathers, brothers, friends, and neighbors use dichotomies as a process of creating definitions of the world that we participate in and then utilize these dichotomies to navigate through our choices. This is very important to note and understand because without our ability to create dichotomies, it would be very hard to understand and interact with the world. Can you imagine not being able to define something and compare or contrast it with something else in order to teach it to someone? So there is a necessity for the ability to create dichotomies for understanding, and a necessity to teach dichotomies. It's a way of learning and understanding differences.
And then I thought, well... Yea it's useful, now my question is dichotomies always a dichotomy ? As in, is everything black and white? Meehhh.
If you just read that line and said yes, please message me at email@example.com. I would love to pick your brain and learn. In my experience, the dichotomized situations and conversations I get into often gets into fifty shades of grey.
No no no not that shades of grey! The shades of perceptions and understandings of dichotomies that we have created in the world! Think about all your conversations about right or wrong, good or bad, winning or losing. How many of those conversations utilized the saying "take it with the grain of salt" or "with shades of grey"? I personally enjoy learning, hanging out with like-minded people, and exploring possibilities. And with that perspective, I realized that my understanding and utilization of dichotomies has shifted in order for me to continue the things I enjoy.
When talking about exploring possibilities, we approach dichotomies with a different perspective. Imagine Thomas Edison, mostly known for engineering the light bulb; what if he never went beyond the dichotomy of what is possible and what is not possible? What about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who went beyond the social norm, and help fuel the change of the dichotomies of racial discrimination? Ok ok ok, I know I am using very broad and big examples so let's make it personal and think about the dichotomies that we have in the world and see how it is serving us. Think to yourself for a moment about the dichotomies we hold for ourselves. Can you recall conversations where you felt you were on one end of the spectrum and the person you were speaking with was on the other? Like a conversation with your brother or sister, or how about your significant other?
My mentor Dr. Gerard Clum, D.C., shared with me this concept, "Life is a game, treat both impostors the same." Good or bad, right or wrong, winning or losing, our job in this world is to to take our thoughts to the next level. Our job is to take the dichotomies of the world and learn how to make them work together for the good. It is important for us to learn dichotomies and teach dichotomies to define, and understand certain boundaries. It is also as equally important for us to understand the value of the dichotomy, and know when and how it can change. I believe if we can place a similar value on both spectrums of a dichotomy then we can look at perspectives and possibilities like we've never done before.
Think about instances where you have already done that! Ever had that conversation, thought it through just a little more and realized that it really isn't good all the time and sometimes it's bad. Or when losing (for example letting your girlfriend win), can be a good thing? There are moments in our lives where we take ourselves to the next level of understanding and using dichotomies, not to just define, teach and learn, but to also expand possibilities. This idea and practice of understanding has really impacted my life. It helped me look at things with a different shade. If life is a game, and I treat both impostors the same, I open up an opportunity for myself to learn in a different way.
Well, we didn't get to values and in fact that is a very big topic. I spoke to a group of chiropractic students about Dichotomies and Values, click the link and get a preview. Let's talk about values on the next random, unpredictable, inconsistent innate improvisation.
Addison Bulosan www.addisonbulosan.com
image credit: 1peachymama.com, www.thetoddanderinfavoritefive.com
P.S. Check out www.healthcarefortherealworld.blogspot.com for me. I read it and digged it.