Holding Tension of the Opposites

my garden


I can tell I am in the process of integrating something meaningful

When the floodgates open (so much writing) and are not ready to close.

In the night I tossed on a sea of thought mashups.

Carl Jung was there:

The last fifteen years of Carl Jung’s life[1] were lived against the backdrop of the Cold War—that time in our global history when most of the nations of the world were aligned either with the “West” or with the “Communist bloc.” Intermittently throughout this time the people of the world held their breath as they watched confrontations between the United States and the Soviet Union heat up. During one such tense time[2] members of the Psychological Club in Zurich asked Jung if he thought there would be an atomic war. Barbara Hannah recalled his reply:
“I think it depends on how many people can stand the tension of the opposites in themselves. If enough can do so, I think the situation will just hold, and we shall be able to creep around innumerable threats and thus avoid the worst catastrophe of all: the final clash of opposites in an atomic war. But if there are not enough and such a war should break out, I am afraid it would inevitably mean the end of our civilization as so many civilizations have ended in the past but on a smaller scale.”[3]

It remains easier..more palatable to look outside ourselves and judge, condemn, distance

But the wisdom for me is always closer to home; right inside me in fact.

How do I GENTLY hold the tension of the opposites in my own physical body for cryin’ out loud?

If the thing is that EVERY DARN THING CHANGES

Then why oh why when I am so weak or depressed or frustrated that I can’t just open a friggin’ jar on my own or pour tea without spilling or stop crying

Do I TOTALLY forget that this is not a permanent state of being but just a rung in the laddar-of-life

And the next rung is always, ALWAYS there within easy reach when I am ready?

This is what holding the opposites is in my mind- living with porosity instead of leadenness.

Whether this means political thought or compassion for ones’ self within all life serves up.

“I forgive you, Cathy, for all the things you aren’t

And celebrate you, dear Cathy, for being a woman of strength, curiosity, bravery and perseverance.”


2 Responses to “Holding Tension of the Opposites”

  1. Debra Moody on August 7th, 2015

    This is what holding the opposites is in my mind- living with porosity instead of leadenness.
    I celebrate you, Cathy.

  2. Jenny on August 8th, 2015

    But it is so understandable, even ok , that we get frustrated , angry , distressed at ourselves, surely it is feeling it deeply and so come through it rather than beigeing it out or scooting over rough ground in a hovercraft like fashion. At least this is the excuse I give myself when I fall over and implode.
    I like the ” rung on the ladder of life “and before , “the kelp forest ” of humanity

Leave a Reply