Can We See Better In Darkness?

Can we see better through darkness?

Imagine this: you are walking in a very well lit place and someone approaches you. You can’t see his face well enough to recognize them because the light blinds you. You may be using your hand to shield your eyes and create some shadow. So you see that we need the darkness after all.

That’s when you recognize the other person and can tell if it’s a friend or a lost stranger. When you see who it is, you know if you can greet him with a hug or show him the way.

Not only do we see better through the darkness, but we also make better choices through it

Imagine a world where it is never dark. If you have never experienced darkness, how can you understand and appreciate the light? It is the contrast between the two that leads us to profound knowledge. After all, we exist in a world of two-sidedness — or at least of two-ended spectrums. Just think of up and down, hot and cold, good and bad.

By experiencing pain, we learn to appreciate joy more. The chaos of the outside world heightens our appreciation of peace. The hatred we see around us improves our understanding of love. Therefore, the difficulties we encounter in our lives are particularly powerful means of gaining vital self-knowledge.

The more nuance we possess, the wiser we can be when making decisions. Darkness thus offers an opportunity for reflection. Instead of seeing only the outside, we can look inside. Life is a journey that travels from the head to the heart.

The difficulties in our lives make this journey possible. That way we can open our hearts and that way we can get to know the difficulties better—and appreciate them better. In short:  darkness offers us the opportunity to get to know ourselves better. Only in this way can we find a connection between what we find inside ourselves and how we act.

The fable of music

Imagine coming from somewhere where the most beautiful music ever made is playing. It is captivating, enchanting music. You’ve been hearing this music day in and day out all your life. The music never stops  and it’s basically the only sound you really know.

One day you realize you’ve  never really  listened to it even though you’ve heard it all these years. In other words, you never appreciated it because you took it for granted. After all, you weren’t used to it any other way. So you decide one day that you want to be able to appreciate this music.

You do that in a challenging way. That way the reward will be all the greater! It occurs to you that you could develop a real, deep understanding of the music if you went somewhere where the music isn’t played. Once you get there, you would then try to recreate it.

This would be based on a diluted echo of the actual music. The experience of remembering the music  and then recreating this great symphony of your home would result in the most complete knowledge of its greatness.

You go to a new place. You listen to new music. Some songs are beautiful and others almost hurt your ears because of how out of tune they sound. These unpleasant tones promote a desire within you. Ultimately, this also fuels a determination to make your own, original music. The darkness will be a very important part of this. You will notice that yourself.

Musical note

The recognition

You soon start composing yourself. In the beginning, the hoarse music distracts you from this new place. However, as time goes by  and you listen more closely to the melodies of your heart, your musical creations become more beautiful.

In the end you create a masterpiece. When you finish it, you remember something: this masterpiece is the same music that was played in your home. This memory sets another in motion:  you are that music. It is not something that belonged outside of yourself; the music is you, and you are the music.

By “creating” yourself in a new place, you get to know yourself in a way that would have been impossible within your usual boundaries. You know that if you hadn’t experienced this darkness, this newness, you wouldn’t have been able to appreciate the beautiful music around you.

The difficulties of life there so we can learn what we  do not have before we remember who we  have been. You could say we explore the false notes and the darkness before recreating the symphonies of our home. We need the darkness to see better. That darkness is necessary so that we can find the right direction for us faster and really learn to appreciate the light.

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