Beforehand, we admit our understanding of the concepts we’ve proposed is still premature as they’ve been recently introduced to us. As we continue to live in accordance with our philosophies, our experience will eventually lead to our understanding, which will then give us the wherewithal to provide in depth explanations that dissolve all unclarity.
“What you hear, you forget. What you see, you remember. But what you do, you understand.”
Our reason for sharing this quote is to emphasize an extremely important fact, which is that the only way to attain a true understanding of anything is by actually doing it yourself, or better yet, by living it. That said, we plan to continuously challenge ourselves through diligent practice of our own teachings so that our lives serve as living testimonials. As practitioners, we are able to assess the validity of our philosophies based on direct, personal experience. Such intimate experience will quickly sharpen our understanding, allowing us the opportunity to expound on our philosophies in a more concise way.
We kindly ask our readers to be patient as we continue to learn and grow closer to the truth.
Life is balance. The world is balance.
Every aspect of this world has an opposite that both justifies and maintains its nature. This is true because the physical world is bound to duality, meaning that every facet of this realm exists in two parts.
Life itself is dual being that it is a result of two distinct, yet joint entities. These entities are life and death. Without death, it is impossible to grasp the concept of life. And without life, there is no such thing as death. In other words, death justifies life, while life confirms death. These seemingly opposite realities are so closely connected that if one was to be removed the other would fail to exist. This implies that they are only ostensibly different, but in actuality, they are one and the same or two parts of the same whole. One simply provides the reference point necessary to interpret the other.
It is beneficial to realize that neither is more important nor present than the other at any given point in time. Both realities exist because of each other, and therefore, always appear together in equal proportion. UpperClass refers to this concept of duality and equality as the Balance Philosophy. Evidence of this philosophy is present in all areas of life; however, some cases are more straightforward than others. For instance, light and dark, good and evil, happy and sad, or even heaven and hell are all very clear examples of the duality we speak of. A more ambiguous example is how the ugliest caterpillar transforms into the most majestic butterfly. Or how the smallest snake often has the deadliest poison. Or even how a student who’s terrible at math may excel in English. Point is, a natural order of balance is always maintained in some way, shape, or form. For one to exist, its opposite must also be extant to ensure that equivalent exchange is met.
Nothing escapes this reality, and it is torturous to act as if the world is all of just any one thing. Nature despises singularity and adores diversity. For diversity is the precursor of balance, and imbalance is the mother of chaos. Diversification is undoubtedly the surest way to achieve balance. In this context, diversity refers to the recognition, consideration, acceptance and incorporation of all that is. Because when all is incorporated, balance is finally achieved.
We have developed a mental illustration to help you visualize this concept of duality and equality.
First, imagine a balance scale. Then picture a particular aspect of life on one plate of the scale, and its complimentary opposite on the other. Hypothetically speaking of course, let’s place good on one side of the scale and evil on the other. Or perhaps light on one side and dark on the other. What would the scale resemble? At any given time, is there more darkness than there is light? Or is there more good than there is evil? The correct answer to both questions is no, every time. The both sides are always equal, and the scale always leveled as a result. However, in order to understand this balance, one must first step back and view the entire scale from a more inclusive angle.
Balance is difficult to visualize if one is standing too close to the scale. At such close proximity, our scope of vision is restricted, rendering us incapable of viewing the full image. Being too close to the scale is a metaphor we use to hint that there is an emotional attachment to a single aspect of reality. As we’ve learned by now, to focus solely on one side in a dualistic world is the truest form of denial and the source of all human suffering. The only way to maintain distance from the scale is by remaining conscious at all times. For consciousness and balance go hand in hand.
A comforting feeling of stability stems from the acceptance of duality and equality. We think this feeling is what many refer to as peace. Once we develop a deeply rooted understanding of this ideology, we can then begin to focus on the central point that lies within every situation. For it is only at this point balance is achieved and preserved.
The central point is a state of absolute clarity where true consciousness thrives. At this point, the individual is liberated of all dualistic attachments and is therefore completely neutral. This neutrality eliminates the need for resistance because there is nothing to defend nor cling to, everything is simply accepted. To be present is the most subtle form of acceptance and an indication of detachment from both past and future. The central point that we speak of delivers such an intense transparency that it dissolves the fog of the past and clears the skies of the future.
In order to divert your focus towards the central point of balance, one must first become entirely present in the now. By focusing on the present moment, you inadvertently force yourself to view the entire image for exactly what it is. Not for what it used to be or for what you expect it to be, solely for what it is. Peace is not found in yesterday nor tomorrow, peace is accessible to everyone right now within the present moment. Ultimately, the central point is the present moment.
Understanding that both opposites exist in equal proportions at all times allows us to view any situation for exactly what it is, irrelevant. I know, woah right. But think about it, in a balanced world where all is equal, nothing stands out. Because if all is balanced and all is equal, then everything is fundamentally the same. And if everything is the same, then there are no outliers to alter your inner state of being by disrupting your focus on the present moment. For example, imagine all basketball players possessed an equal level of skill, would any single player stand out as good or bad? No, none would because how can they ever be anything other than the same. So now, as a fan of basketball, in order for me to select a favorite player or team I’d have to find arbitrary justifications to validate my selection.
Ultimately, it is our right to decide what is of value to us. Here at UpperClass, we wholeheartedly believe in creating an auspicious environment for ourselves, one that promotes peaceful growth. We do so by staying present in order to ensure that we are performing at our maximum capacity at all times. Optimal performance is only possible when one is completely detached from the burdens of the past and the fears of the future. Basically, one must be actively conscious in order to perform best. We decided to give value to the sense of fulfillment that comes from present moment awareness. With this approach, results no longer matter. Whether you fail or succeed is no longer of concern. What matters is that we constantly set forth our best efforts by remaining conscious within that central point of balance.
We have found solace in this approach as it gives us a clear sense of reality that keeps us grounded yet mobile. This state of stability anchors us to our deeper self that only exist within the present. We have decided to protect our state of well-being by not allowing compulsive thinking to suffocate our fragile peace. This is what it means to be UpperClass.
It is utterly essential that we humans develop a transparent understanding of duality in order to respect its role maintaining balance. Once we gain such understanding, we can then accept its permanence and no longer succumb to extremes. The reason we often find ourselves feeling overwhelmed is because we allow our minds to drift into either of the opposite poles without realizing that both sides are always present in equal proportion. A situation is never exclusively bad or good. Since life is dual, then nothing in life can ever be all of just one thing. Something that is good from one angle is equally as bad from another angle. This is invariably true. The only factor that is inconsistent is our angle of focus. Because our focus is rarely in the present moment. It usually lingers somewhere in the past or future.
As mentioned earlier, UpperClass chooses the angle that considers and secures our inner peace which is derived from our consciousness. This philosophy is not advising you stop yourself from experiencing sadness or happiness. Its purpose is to highlight the significance of both emotions, so that you are able to recognize them for what they truly are, two parts of the same whole. Cognizance of duality and equality transfers balance into your life.
It’s like a person who adores compliments but hates criticism. This is a popular imbalance that stems from a common misunderstanding. Many don’t realize that compliments and criticisms are fruits of the same tree. In other words, they share a mutual origin. Compliment grows alongside criticism. A balanced individual is aware of this fact and therefore does not allow compliments nor harsh criticism to influence their behavior in any way. By treating them both as equal, you remain conscious and in total control of your reaction each time, which is the ultimate purpose of attaining balance, to gain control of oneself.
Once we attain a proper understanding of the inherent balance present in all aspects of life, we can then begin to slowly incorporate balance into our own lives. This way, if something seems excessive or far greater than its opposite, we’d quickly realize that we are guilty of standing too close to the scale. So, you see, our strength is the surface of our understanding and awareness.
The infinite challenge is to remember to take a step back in order to see the big picture. It is impossible to distance yourself from something you are unconscious of, therefore, stay conscious of the invisible scale that weighs all in within the physical world.
We learned the concept of equivalent exchange from an anime series called Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood. We highly recommend this series.
Also, this philosophy was highly influenced by a book titledThe Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. One of our members, Tywreh Nelson, found the book on the beach while in Hawaii as a National Exchange Student. The book was in poor condition when he found it, but he decided to take it any way.
Lastly, if you are a college student, consider studying abroad for a semester. According to Tywreh, it was an absolutely wonderful experience.