Human Duality

In previous posts on the Natural World, I presented and detailed the idea of duality (dualism).  Duality has deep roots in Nature including human nature. Human beings are immersed in a vast ocean of duality that is part of our everyday life. We have a natural propensity to be schismatic, bilateral, and 2-sided creatures. Even anatomically and physiologically we are bilateral creatures having two legs, eyes, arms, ears, feet, and a 2-hemispheric brain. I maintain the two key points related to Nature’s dualisms are: 1.) they are limited (few in number), and 2.) they tend to be univalent where they cycle into one another: egs. inanimate becomes animate or day becomes night. However, human nature’s dualisms can be unlimited, especially when compared to the limited number in the natural world. We are bifurcative creatures and this dimorphism often makes for diametrically opposed views, adversarial positioning, disunity, discord, and fractures between people and among groups.

I emphasize that bifurcative thinking and behaviors are deeply engrained in humans and they are often bivalent: –—> something is good or bad with little in between. Human dualisms are often endless disruptions that separate us from one another. The sheer number of our dualisms has a lot to do with human cultures, and how cultures interpret Nature. In this interpretation there is frequently a cultural bias that introduces artificial dualisms into Nature’s evolution and inheritance. Artificial dualisms generally reflect the historical values, beliefs, habits, customs, traditions, views and attitudes of a particular person or culture. Much of this human artificial duality involves assumptions that keep people apart.  It was Goethe who suggested that, “literature might well reflect the ambiguity of life, which always invites many differing interpretations, each of them inadequate if it is taken by itself.” (1961 trans.) It was Confucius who maintained that, “men’s natures are alike, it is their habits that carry them apart.” (5th Cent BC).

human duality