The Daily Walk with Love
The Yin-yang (or yinyang) was invented (or perceived) by Lao Tzu, and is a fundamental concept of the Chinese religion (or philosophy) called Taoism. It is also accepted as important in Buddhism, and to some
extent Hinduism, and speaks to us in terms of the dualities it describes, but might also be viewed as united into one whole.
republished with additions and editing,
September 13, 2019
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Some new thoughts on the Yin-yang
a few ideas of mine involving
a description of what is yang and what
is yin, and why there is a problem there
for western religious thought
A lot of what I do here at The Daily Walk with Love involves understanding other philosophical and religious ideas from a Christian point of view: This is what comparative religion does. If true knowledge and understanding are enhanced by reviewing significant truths from other religions, can our Christian faith be harmed? Won’t we only gain by exposure to other world religions and philosophical ideas from down through the ages? Some of this involves philosophical views which might increase our overall understanding? How could that be wrong if our Christian faith is strong?
First, let me give you some resources so that if you are interested, you might be led to do more reading, and more in depth, if you wish. In late November, 2018, right here on The Daily Walk with Love, we carried a popular article which I wrote called The Ten Commandments of Buddhism. To me, those ideas were strongly similar to what I believe Jesus really taught. (Keep in mind that the Buddha lived about 500 years before Jesus.) Also see What is Yin Yang? on the website called Personal Tao, and perhaps do a Google search for the term understanding the yin-yang, so that you might explore some of those search results if you are strongly driven to understand a lot more.
Actually, the yin yang is “deep” and is an evolved set of ideas, and reading about it was very interesting but was a demanding set of philosophical ideas, which are shot through much of modern Chinese and Buddhist thought, in China and throughout southeast Asia, as well as in yoga teachings. I have been interested in the yin-yang for many years, especially since it is the main logo I use for my website here.
I once spoke a few times with a man who said that, for him, the religion he followed was Christianity, but the philosophy by which he lived was a lot more Buddhist: Christian religion, Buddhist philosophical mindset or lifestyle. This was, if nothing else, quite interesting to me.
Now I will (finally lol) give the reader my ideas about what fits more into yin and what are more yang ideas. Yang: sunny days and daylight, masculinity, logic, the brain’s left neocortical hemisphere (where we think most logical reasoning takes place), and (perhaps, I am not sure), dryness. Then in terms of polar opposites, we have Yin, the night, femininity, the brain’s right hemisphere, intuitive thinking, and rainy days. And that’s just touching the surface of it, although these are the main concepts, so far as I know.
But the yin-yang is an old concept which dates to about 500 B.C. (perceived by the founder of Taoism, Lao Tsu). Western society (I believe) did philosophy and religion and even the centers of our Christian thought a grave disservice when it associated yang with Jesus and yin with Satan. These two had never been associated with the yin-yang model for the first thousand years of it’s existence and I believe it was a grave mistake. That’s because it made women and intuitive thought in a deeply held and believed way, evil, especially among some fundamentalists. I believe that this newer (and wrong-minded) viewpoint hurt us, hurt some of our most basic mindsets, and even the course of western history. It was when I realized this that I knew I had to write this article.
However, even if you did incorporate Jesus and Satan here, where do you incorporate God Himself? If God is infinite and omnipotent and omniscient, I would think he must be viewed as the circle around the whole, as in the Christian song, “Will the Circle be Unbroken.” So, basically, God can do as he wishes, and remember, “if ye seek evil you will surely find it.” However I can not see any evil about women or intuitive thought, so I believe strongly that incorporating Christian concepts of Jesus (as yang) or Satan (as yin) is completely wrong. Eastern thought also believes that yin and yang are complementary and not oppositional, which is further vindication of what I am saying here. (In other words, medieval Christianity almost fully viewed yin and yang, as well as today in conservative. This pervasive conservative Christian belief, that most things yin are evil, has hurt our very thought processes and brought the yin-yang into a mistaken understanding of them as fully oppositional, and that has been caried on down through the centuries as strong beliefs. In it’s conception and for 1,000 years, yin and yang were considered to be fully complementary, and putting Satan into yin made women and intuitive thought evil, and that is very wrong. I hope and pray you might see the truth in what I have written here. If enough people did, maybe our society might be partially healed.
Proverbs 13:7 – There is that maketh himself rich, yet hath nothing:
there is that maketh himself poor, yet hath great riches.
(King James version)
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