Right & Wrong
We will be looking at the dualistic concepts of right & wrong, good & bad. This topic came about as we talked about the practice of witnessing, simply observing without judgment, which provides us with a little distance from our usual ego perspective. However, operating from the perspective of good and bad, right and wrong, is common to all of us. We find ourselves in the world of mind, concepts and beliefs, a world of opposites, habitually attached and suffering. Overcoming these tendencies brings about greater equanimity in one’s life.
In freedom there is no right and no wrong.
In freedom there is freedom from right and wrong.
The pivot of Tao passes through the center where all affirmations and denials converge.
So you are neither perfect nor imperfect.
Neither right nor wrong
Neither good nor evil.
Neither yin nor yang.
Neither this ”nor that.
You are, instead, only the empty space in which all of these apparent opposites appear-to-appear.
~ Chuang Tzu
You can't get anything wrong, and you don't have to get anything right.
~ Pamela Wilson
Nothing is wrong with the body.
Nothing is wrong with the mind.
Nothing is wrong with the heart.
But the ego identity!
This is where the 'man' is born.
Where he lives
and where he dies
in ignorance of his real being.
Remember inside your heart:
'I am the timeless Self.'
You have been brainwashed since you were a small child,
and you have a belief system that you react to every day.
You say this is good and this is bad
and this is right and this is wrong,
I love this and I hate this.
All part of your belief system, the mind.
Now, these roots have been planted a long time ago.
Therefore to get rid of your negative thinking so-to-speak,
you have to dig a big hole to pull out the roots.
You do this by turning away from your problems,
turning away from your situations,
turning away from the world and diving deep within yourself.
Continually, day after day after day, never looking for results.
Never saying, I've been practicing a month now and
nothing has happened.
Remember how many years it took you to be the way you are.
The things that your mind has accepted.
The stuff you've got deep in your subconscious so-to-speak.
It has to come up and gotten rid of.
~ Robert Adams
There is no such thing as right and wrong in life.
The question is, are your actions appropriate and inclusive.
Right or wrong,
Joy and sorrow,
These are of the mind only.
They are not yours.
It is not really you
Who acts or enjoys.
You are everywhere,
Forever and truly free,
The single witness of all things.
~ Ashtavakra Gita
Operating from ideas, one has an option to be kind and loving. All choice comes from mind, totally influenced by one’s beliefs in right and wrong. Without thought-identification, compassion happens, kindness happens, generosity happens, care and tenderness happen. What flows through naturally is not edited by mind before, during or after—there is no mind involved where there is emptiness.
~ Jac O'Keeffe
Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.
~ Alan Watts
If there is beauty, there must be ugliness;
If there is right, there must be wrong.
Wisdom and ignorance are complementary,
And illusion and enlightenment cannot be separated.
This is an old truth, don’t think it was discovered recently.
“I want this, I want that”
Is nothing but foolishness.
I’ll tell you a secret –
All things are impermanent!
Are you aligned with the perfection of oneness
or are you playing the game of right and wrong?
~ Stuart Schwartz
We really cannot know what is right or wrong, we can only open.
Surrender to this mystery.
In meditation, our thoughts and emotions can become
like clouds that dwell and pass away. Good and comfortable,
pleasing and difficult and painful—all of this comes and
goes. So the essence of meditation is training in something
that is quite radical and definitely not the habitual pattern of
the species: and that is to stay with ourselves no matter what
is happening, without putting labels of good and bad, right
and wrong, pure and impure, on top of our experience.
~ Pema Chodron
Life can be trusted absolutely, even when trust seems a million light-years away, and life cannot go wrong, for all is life, and life is all.
Understand this, know it in your heart, and spirituality is profoundly simple, as simple as breathing, as natural as gazing up at the stars at night and falling into silent wonder.
The universe is more beautiful than you could ever imagine.
~ Jeff Foster
To end strife,
One must end opposition,
The root of which is mind.
Right and wrong,
Good and bad,
Past and future,
Joy and sorrow,
Desire and aversion are all
Created by this thought factory.
Taking the attention away from mind is
A movement toward peace.
~ Wu Hsin
There is a center of attention, an awareness, that witnesses all opposites while transcending them.
This freedom from good and evil, right and wrong, beauty and ugliness, is what is spoken of in the Bible, as the Kingdom of Heaven.
~ Ramesh Balsekar
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn’t make any sense.
Do not hold to dualistic views.
Avoid such habits carefully.
If there is even a trace of right or wrong,
the mind is lost in confusion.
Although all dualities arise from the One,
do not cling, even to this One.
When the mind exists undisturbed in The Way,
everything is without fault.
When things can no longer be faulty,
it is as if there are no things.
When the mind can no longer be disturbed,
it is as if there is no mind.
~ Sosan Zenji, 3rd Zen Patriarch
Nails (a Sufi teaching story)
Mulla Nasrudin (the holy fool of stories) had been watching a mental hospital patient nailing a fence and had been puzzled by the fact that the latter was discarding a large proportion of the nails, throwing
them away with growing exasperation. Eventually, the Mulla could contain his curiosity no longer.
"Those nails look quite new. Why do you keep throwing them away?" he enquired.
"Why? Because they are badly made, that's why!" snapped the other "Almost half of them have got the points on the wrong end!"
"YOU FOOL! howled Nasrudin, "You should not be throwing them away! Those are for the other side of the fence!"