The Magdalene on balance

Balance is important. Without access to the full spectrum of expression of a given thing, imbalance occurs, which means that the expression of that thing will be potentially problematic. In this abstract, this is either an obvious statement or completely incomprehensible, depending on the person.

If you only ever exercise your lower leg by pointing your toes or going up on your tiptoes, you’re going to get a cramp in your calf, which can only be relieved by pulling your toes toward your knee. You can’t just point your toes without also flexing your ankle the other way.

When a society places too much value on competition, its members don’t see when a solution that benefits everyone exists, because they have been trained to think that there is always a winner and a loser. In this situation, ultimately even teamwork becomes undesirable or is seen as manipulative.

Every inhale leads to an exhale, which necessitates another inhale, and so on. The entire universe, and everything in it, is made of ebb and flow, or push and pull, of contraction and expansion. These are not binary states, though – there is a spectrum in going from full ebb to peak flow. And all of the gradients need to be given energy if we want things to function properly.

In your own life, start by examining how much value you place on resting, or stillness, on recharging your batteries. This includes resting your attention and your mind. Not watching a form of entertainment or reading a book. Not figuring something out. Just allowing yourself to be still.

Now that I have made you uncomfortable, if you’re even still with me, examine you much value and energy you give on a daily basis to your mental, emotional, physical, passionate, and spiritual selves. Are you fostering balance If you look at what’s not working in your life, it may be possible to draw a correlation with the imbalances in your five aspects of self.

You may have noticed how much easier it is to see what needs “fixing” in others than in ourselves, in seeing where problems are out in the world rather than in our own lives. How often do we say “they should” versus “I could”?


(1) The only thing you have control over are your own actions and reactions.

(2) What we notice that needs changing in others is a clue to what we see as our own personal failings.

(3) When we change the internal quality of our lives (how happy, compassionate, considerate, accepting, serene, etc we are), we change our experience of the world. That is to say, the more compassionate (and therefore less judgmental) we are, the more compassionate the world seems to us.

What will you do with this information?

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