This was in response to my comment, “Folks on the left use people on the right as scapegoats, just as folks on the right use those on the left. Each is consumed by the blind spot fueled by their underlying needs and fears, which drives the emotion that packs the punch behind their idealist agenda.
Whew! Then, I had to ask myself, is my so called fixation on “same, same” also a blind spot?
I don’t think so, for one important reason. Finding similarities between opposites takes the punch out of emotion, and removes the underlying rational for most every ideal. Making a mountain out of a molehill becomes difficult. Additionally, finding numerous examples of similarities between ostensibly unrelated things can also tell you that the ‘molehill’ you are seeing may be something ‘real’, rather than a projection of your own emotion. By the way, I see ‘real’ as being that to which the first two lines of chapter 1 speak.
All the same, I realize the blind spot is certainly alive and well on my end in some respects. In our current debate, I think Andy and I are seeing different parts of the elephant (1). Central here is how different issues trigger our fairness instinct (2). Andy objects to the unfair income distribution caused by Republicans. I object to the unfairness of him just singling out those ‘devils’. Honestly, I see just as much (though different) malfeasance on the Democratic side. In short, self-interest speaks with ‘forked tongue’. Altogether, I notice two things happening here… First, my blind spot ‘helps’ me to see the difference, which I then “fixate” on and meld into “same, sameness”. Why do I bother? Oh well, just call me Don Quixote
While ‘camping’ in the middle of the Sahara desert I reached a point of total disillusionment with humanity’s ideals and accompanying hypocrisy (i.e., when intelligence increase, there is great falseness). A desert’s “same, sameness” can open the mind in interesting ways. In wake of that experience, I began to form a singular appreciation of nature’s wisdom. Nature, by all indications, always moves toward balance. Balance is the bottom line, despite how dynamic the ‘balance’ may be at any moment. From that, I developed a deep-seated faith in what I saw as nature’s prime directive: balance. For me, arriving at a balanced view became essential; no more hiding behind scapegoats for me.
Cognitively speaking, this means if I notice myself seeing / favoring one point of view over another, I assume right away that I’m projecting my own self-interested sensibility (i.e., need and fear) into what I see. My view is out of balance and out of sync with natural wisdom. I can’t help but then strive diligently until I see the whole picture, equal and balance. (Correlations help take me up to the brink of ultimate balance.)
I end up searching all rationales until I find equality. Of course, the view often looks pretty shadowy and indistinct; happily, this can also help to verify that I’m close. It’s little wonder that such sameness is called profound sameness. This, more than anything else, helps me in what is called going without going. Only here can I find peace. So I’ll opt for ‘fixation on same, same’ over ‘fixation on differences’ any day! Clinging to a differences point-of-view just causes stress. I pick my battles.
(1) I imagine debating anything depends on the blind spot. See, John Cleese, A ‘Taoist’?, and the Blind men and an elephant story. One needs to see their side more keenly than the opposing side. Doing otherwise would take all the steam and fun out of the interaction. Frankly, seeing both sides in an impartial light is boring. Ah, but that means it’s also peaceful, calm, and the way to devote effort to emptiness, sincerely watch stillness.
(2) The primal survival instincts of need and fear drive all animals. Social animals have another innate drive that I loosely refer to the fairness instinct. It is ubiquitous, and underlies anger, jealously, envy, resentment, etc. See PDF, Unfair Trade: Monkeys demand equitable exchanges and A Symptom’s Point Of View.