Regarding relating, it should be mentioned, there is (+), (-) and nuetral, but there is also indifference. I said nuetral relating occurs when one achieves emptiness. (trancends ego, reaches enlightenment or realizes the way). Indifference is when ego does not relate. It’s sort of like “not caring,” but people often say they “don’t care” when the real truth is they dislike someone or something, in which case they are relating (-) or channeling (-) energy. True indifference is fairly uncommon. It really only happens when a reality has absolutely no influence or affect on you. The moment you start to have perceptions or attitudes about something or someone (some reality) you begin to relate to that reality either (+) or (-). Indifference is truly not relating. Emptiness is not indifference because in emptiness we no longer have an ego that is active or activated. In indifference, ego merely doesn’t relate.
Be cautious about considering “yourself” indifferent. It’s likely you’re relating (-).
I should also mention passion. This is a tricky reality to describe and write about. Passion is clearly not possible when we are indifferent nor is it when we are nuetral. It is possible when we relate positivley or negatively. However, positive relating implies a very balanced or moderate passion. The moment we step off the “tip of the roof” of indifference, we begin go relate (+) or (-). The farther away from the tip we go, the more passion we engage. Passion at first increases as we deepen our involvement in either (+) or (-) relating, but then it begins to wane as we go even deeper or farther along the spectrum. Positive relating cannot involve very much passion because positive relating implies a recognition of the 8 natural laws. The 8 laws imply the need for being centered. This is a topic for another post, but being centered is impossible when we are engaging passion in all but the most moderate or balanced of ways.
Positive relating exists on a continuum that is imperceptably vast and runs right up to enlightenment. As we approach enlightenment, passion decreases, so in the base stages of relating (+) we have passion growing, but as we go farther along the spectrum, passion begins to decline.
Negative relating also exists on a continuum, but one that merely involves degrees of destructiveness. Negative relating also involves a loss of passion in the extreme end of the spectrum when you consider sociopaths and maybe other forms of mental illness where people disassociate from themselves and others.
Passion involves being judged-attached. This is a state of being bound by a relationship with something or someone. We have judged something as good or bad, and we begin to relate accordingly. If we’ve judged it good or bad, we are no longer indifferent. Those who are enlightened relate nuetrally and do not engage in judgement. Whether we judge something good or bad, we are relating to it and giving it meaning and thus will experience it in our lives. So it is impossible to judge something as bad and avoid it, so what significance or meaning could judging something as bad have? Its nonsense. Judge it as bad or judge it as good, it doesn’t matter, you will experience it. Only if you do not give something meaning, if it has no meaning for you, only if you’re indifferent about it or nuetral about it will you therefore not experince it. But only if you are nuetral hve you actually outgrown it and thus beyond it. If you are indifferent, you could still get tripped up by it. Thus, the only way to be beyond it is to have experienced it and outgrown it. To be “sick of it.”
“the sage is sick of sickness, therefore he is not sick.” that’s in the Tao te Ching.
Passion merely describes the magnitude of emotional content involved in the judgement. This brings us to another discussion of ‘heart-mind’ and perceptions/attitudes. Please see an upcoming post on “the what context.”