Tree of Life Etz Chaim Series Part 2 – Is Evil the Opposite of Good?
In Part 1 of this Tree of Life Series, I took a look at an ages-old error in the male-female identification of the columns of the Tree of Life. In this blog Part 2, I am asking the question, is evil the opposite of good, and we’ll be exploring some more questions that will help us delve deeper into understanding the Tree of Life Etz Chaim and how to achieve harmony and balance between the opposite polarities found on its different branches.
First, a quiz for fun and to see where you stand in your reckoning of opposites, your deciphering of dipoles. We’ll start simple and build our way up from there. As a clue, what will help you answer these questions is to keep in mind the question “Do these two elements create a balance which is greater than the sum of their parts?” If they do, they can be said to be polar opposites.
Up is the Opposite of Down?
Pretty simple. Up and Down are opposites.
Left is the Opposite of Right?
Left is indeed the Opposite of Right. Left side of the body is also the polar opposite of the right side.
North pole on a magnet is the opposite of South pole on a magnet?
Magnetic north and magnetic south poles of a magnet are indeed polar opposites, and understanding their functioning is a great metaphor for the interplay between the polar opposites of levels of the Tree of Life. Eg. Chochma and Bina, Chesed and Gevourah, Netzach and Hod
Arrogance is the Opposite of Humility?
Arrogance is not the opposite of humility, it is the ABSENCE of humility. The opposite of humility (Netzach) is Self-esteem / Greatness / Splendor (Hod). The union of opposites makes a precious "Child" a third energy which is both and neither. Arrogance and humility do not make a precious child, but a strange and unhealthy negation that cannot coexist. Humility and greatness make something special - Honour.
Logic/Understanding is the Polar Opposite of Intuition / Wisdom?
Yes, these Intuition and Rational/Logic are polar opposites on the Tree of Life as Chochma (Intuition/Wisdom) and Bina (Logic/Rational understanding).
Judgment of something is the Opposite of Acceptance of something just as it is?
No, Judgment is the absence of Acceptance. Discernment is the opposite of Acceptance. When you judge something you negate the acceptance of it. So judgment renders acceptance nullified. They do not create a balance which results in a third energy, therefore the result is zero. This will be explained even more when we ourselves discern the difference between the Tree of Knowledge for Good and Bad and the Tree of Life.
Night is the Opposite of Day?
Yes, night and day are polar opposites and so the two Luminaries which rule each one, Moon and Sun, which rule each one respectively, can be considered opposites as well. This is key in alchemy, because it is the union of these two opposites, the philosophical sun and moon, which makes the Philosopher's Stone.
Negative is the Opposite of Positive
Negative and Positive are polar opposites which make up the balance of All that is. It is important not to think of the math equation -1 and +1 because these when combined make ZERO, as in nothing at all, zilch, nada, bupkas, much like arrogance cancelling out humility leaving zilch and judgment erasing acceptance.
Death is the Opposite of Life?
Death is the absence of life, or when life stops. True life, as in our consciousness, never ends, but death is the end of a given life as we have known it on earth, just not its opposite.
Evil is the Opposite of Good?
Evil is the absence of Good, not the opposite, which is a common misconception, that is not to say that evil does not serve some ultimate good purpose, so it's tricky. Either way, evil is not good's opposite.
God is made up of the Balance of Good and Evil?
God is All Good which is made up of the balance of polar opposites such as Sun-Moon, Negative and Positive, Darkness and Light, Yin and Yang, Chesed-Gevourah, Netzach-Hod. Yeshua is the same. He banishes evil. He does not make up a balance with evil. True, God created evil to serve a purpose, but does not make up a balance with it. There is no opposite of God, for God is All that is. Evil just plays a role toward illusion - that which is not.
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So there you have it. How’d you do? After the rest of this blog, you’ll be a champion of opposites, a regular Jedi of Yin-Yang identification.
The main take-home message is that God is All Good, which is not a balance of good and evil. God, the Creator, the Stuff of Life, is a balance between opposites that are poles, like two sides of the same coin, like opposite extremes of a spectrum. Good and evil is duality, which is not the same as polarity, and God is essentially beyond good and evil. God exists in a realm where there is the unity of opposites, and those opposites are two poles of the same Oneness. In the Tree of Life those polar opposites are between Chochma <–> Bina, Chesed <–>Gevourah, Netzach <–> Hod, and one pairing which has yet to be mentioned, Keter <–> Malchut.
With the question “Is arrogance the opposite of humility?” some would say yes, but do arrogance and humility make up a balance which is Godly? Does being arrogant and humble at the same time make any kind of sense that creates something that is of the nature of The Divine Creator? No. Arrogance is an energy which is devoid of the wisdom of nature, the stuff of life. It is the result of a consciousness that has no humility, thus arrogance is the energy of self-esteem which has gone putrid without the life-giving sustenance of humility. One cannot, therefore, be both arrogant and humble at the same time, so they cannot be opposites. In the Tree of Life, this looks like Netzach (Humility, I am of myself nothing) being opposite to Hod (Self-Esteem, splendor, greatness, I am something) yet the Hod has been disconnected from the source of Netzach in the right column of the Tree of Life, so that there is no union, no harmony, no flow, but a dualistic existence, like a married couple living in separate rooms that have a closed door between them. No communication. No connection. No way for each to empower or influence the other in the archetypically proper way. Since the Tree of Life is an exalted Tree, a symbol of pure God-ness, I AM, unity of true opposites, this dualistic state cannot be a part of the Tree of Life. And in fact, it is not.
The Tree of Knowledge for Good and Bad and also known as the Tree of Knowledge for Good and Evil, is the symbol for duality. Arrogance and false humility (playing small), destructive violent aggression and smothering caring, sharp knife-edged judgment and out of context new-agey positivity, are also aspects of the split, dualistic nature of the tree of Knowledge for Good and Bad, which we will explore in Part 3 of the Tree of Life Etz Chaim Series.
Peace be with you. Shalom Alaikum. Salaam Aleichem.