A Photo a Week Challenge: White


I really wanted to take a nice picture with my camera for this contest but sense it was snowing all day yesterday I went on a walk without it and took this one with my iPhone. This was the first snow fall of the year and didn’t come until December 11. It is kind of crazy how global warming is offsetting the weather so much.. This was taken at a park called Middlegrounds along the Maumee river in downtown Toledo that was just opened this year. The park runs along the riverfront the entire time and everywhere you walk you have a breath-taking view. When I came here yesterday I enjoyed the silence of winter and just sat on the swing and watched the water flow by. With this picture and the theme of the week being “white” I’d like to share a profound lesson by Alan Watts on the game of Black and White:

“The general habit of conscious attention is, in various ways, to ignore intervals.

We do not play the Game of Black-and-White — the universal game of up/down, on/off, solid/space, and each/all. Instead, we play the game of Black-versus-White or, more usually, White-versus-Black. But the game “White must win” is no longer a game. It is a fight — a fight haunted by a sense of chronic frustration, because we are doing something as crazy as trying to keep the mountains and get rid of the valleys.

The principal form of this fight is Life-versus-Death, the so-called battle for survival, which is supposed to be the real, serious task of all living creatures.

Thus for thousands of years human history has been a magnificently futile conflict, a wonderfully staged panorama of triumphs and tragedies based on the resolute taboo against admitting that black goes with white. Nothing, perhaps, ever got nowhere with so much fascinating ado. As when Tweedledum and Tweedledee agreed to have a battle, the essential trick of the Game of Black-and-White is a most tacit conspiracy for the partners to conceal their unity, and to look as different as possible. It is like a stage fight so well acted that the audience is ready to believe it a real fight. Hidden behind their explicit differences is the implicit unity of what Vedanta calls the Self, the One-without-a-second, the what there is and the all that there is which conceals itself in the form of you.

If, then, there is this basic unity between self and other, individual and universe, how have our minds become so narrow that we don’t know it?”


This goes to show how you cannot have winter without summer, spring without fall, precipitation without dryness, sunny days without cloudy ones, etc. You must learn to appreciate the duality of nature instead of clinging to one side. What are your thoughts on the matter?