The idea of opposites that dance together is an oriental concept that I like very much. The duality of existence (yin-yang, male-female, good-bad, bright-dark, old-young etc) is a complex relational concept. The opposed forces not only coexist but they complement each other. They rely on one another to exist. One gives birth to the other. They interchange and interplay. We cannot acknowledge one aspect of life without its opposite. The most obvious example is that there cannot be a shadow without light. The same way there cannot be happiness without sorrow, beauty without ugliness, power without weakness and so on.
When something is whole, it’s unchanging and complete. So when you split something into two halves – yin/yang, the equilibrium of wholeness is broken. Therefore, both halves are chasing after each other as they seek to regain balance.
The ancient Greeks captured this idea in a beautiful story in Plato’s Symposium: The Androgynous Myth. In short, the story states that in the beginning of time there were three kinds of humans: male, female and androgynous. They had four hands, four legs, two heads, two sets of genitals, and so on. They could move both forward and backward and would run by spinning themselves around cartwheel-like on all eight limbs. They were very powerful and vigorous and made threatening attacks on the gods, so Zeus decided to cut each person in two and scatter the halves into the world. After that, longing for their original nature, people kept trying to find their other half and reunite with it. When they found it, they would embrace very tightly and did not let go, not wanting anything else. This is the origin of our instinctive desire for other human beings. Those who are interested in members of the opposite sex are halves of formerly androgynous people, while men who like men and women who like women are halves of what were formerly whole males and females.
“Love”, according to Plato, is the name that we give to our desire for wholeness. But to restore our original nature, it takes more than finding each other. True love is not found somewhere on a bench, in a park, it is not discovered all of a sudden, at first sight, but rather, it is the product of immense work, constant attention, and sacrifice. If soulmates exist, they are made and shaped, after a lifetime partnership, a lifetime shared dealing with common duties, enduring pain, and of course, joy.
The same it is with my ballerina and her shaolin monk. As yin-yang dancing partners, they have to work a lot to find their own rhythm. Their life backgrounds are so different. Their cultures are so different. Their training is so different. Will they find their way to flow together, completing each other in a graceful unprecedented dance? Of course they will! They both have the discipline, the determination. They both have the will. And, even if they’ll struggle to get accustomed to one another, in the end, their dance will be the most graceful of all. And all the world will wonder watching this odd dancing couple that will perform this magnificent dance of opposites.
Thank you for stopping by.
PS: There are 2 background variations because I couldn’t decide which one I like best. Two different feelings. I love them both. 🙂
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