Thoughts on Antonyms
Opposites play a major role in how we perceive the world. It is easier to understand, compare and evaluate by applying opposite concepts. Day and night, black and white, life and death, peace and war, good and bad; we can comprehend and appreciate more deeply the meaning of such ideas because we can compare them with their contraries. This duality gives us insights about reality and shapes it more clearly. Some would argue that we can only understand what happiness is if we have ever experienced sadness. Others would say that we can appreciate our healthy body more after recovering from illness. This view implies that sometimes bad things can turn out to have positive outcomes, if we consider the bigger picture. They can give us a lesson and help us acknowledge what is best for us.
Based on this perspective, I wonder if was it really needed to reach the world’s current situation, our age’s troubled point, to stimulate the construction of a better world. Will all these current problems in the end bring the so longed-for consciousness revolution and help us find the way to thrive peacefully on this planet, accordingly with the opposite’s view? Or will they just condemn forever humankind’s destiny, showing us that good and bad cannot coexist and that the evil force has to prevail over the other?
Idealistically, I would rather wish to live in a world where inequity, pollution, poverty, crime, discrimination and oppression do not exist. It is difficult to accept that so much pain is needed in order to reach a bigger aim. On the other hand, a world in which only happiness, equity and peace exist seems to reduce humanity’s free will, suggesting an already pre-established path with no space for consciousness. Still, is the freedom of choice (even when it implies the chance of choosing evil) more worthy than a peaceful, safe and clean environment?
The debate on how the best ideal world should look like could go on forever. And what about you: do you find opposites necessary or would you rather live in a world where they didn’t exist?