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Non-duality for Dummies: Non-duality in everyday life

The motto ‘it is as it is’ usually doesn’t seem right to me. In my view, we have a lot of influence on the path that we take in life, and in general people also expect you to challenge yourself to realize your full potential so that in time you will progress as well emotionally as professionally. Things do not simply come naturally.

Yet, since I started working for the social and onlineteam of Alice the Movie,  seemingly the motto and the subject of nonduality keep surfacing in my daily life. ‘Who is Alice?’ is a comedy about nonduality, ‘but what does that that actually mean?’, you may wonder. Nonduality originates in India, and focuses literally on the ‘nondual’. That strikes me as peculiar, as life is so full of contradictions.

For instance; everyone experiences their school days differently. It therefore occurs often that we don’t understand another person’s choice. Even though colleagues would be eager to get that promotion, you might as well be fine with the position you have now. However, even choices that have to be made, have a flipside; ‘is this a good or a bad choice?’ ‘Will I go to the gym today or will I stay on the couch?’. All these binary differences that we perceive, often cause us a lot of stress.

Do you really influence on the choices that you make?

Nonduality refers to the idea that contradictions simply do not exist, and that things are as they are. Do you really influence on the choices that you make? In real life this often turns out not to be the case, as for instance you can’t control your thoughts. Might choices be uncontrollable as well? Bigger life dilemma’s often leave you thinking long and hard, but is this also the case with everyday choices?

I want to encourage you to think about whether you make your everyday choices consciously. Do you consciously think about whether you’ll buy the blue or the green dishwashing brush? Do you deliberately choose to get off the couch and to do your exercise, or is this in fact predetermined? If the choice is already a given, then I already know what it’s going to be: I am going to sleep outside in the sun for another bit.

Blog: Ilke Hekker
English translation by: Judith Boeschoten
Cartoon: Eduard Heyne

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