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Musing on darkness tonight. What I call the black mirror.

I was thinking about how, when we form a new connection, there’s this tendency to fill the space with just “love and light” type stuff. It’s new, it’s nice, and we are happy about it.

But at some point, the thing happens. The other person says or does something that pulls us up short and makes us go WTF. Something darker emerges. This is the point where many people cut and run because they either can’t stand the darkness in themselves – the black mirror – or in the other person; it’s too disruptive of their love and light preference.

But in Buddhism, the experience of black mirror is a GOOD thing. Because it reflects some kind of real truth, some raw feedback that isn’t part of a facade. It’s not curated. It’s something that just fell out into the space between you and there is this “oh shit” quality about it, and so many questions too.

It’s considered raw truthfulness if you will. And as Buddhists we don’t run away. We don’t reject or deny what just happened. We see it as rich, full of potential. We contemplate and then we say, “wow, I don’t know what to make of that. That didn’t look good. Can you tell me more about that. I don’t get it. I don’t understand. Help me understand what’s going on inside you.”

I have found, though, that this is often where the OTHER person cuts and runs. Maybe, often, they have the idea that they don’t have darkness inside them, which is bullshit. Anyone who has been around “love and light good vibes only” people can tell you that these kinds of people are always the darkest and cruelest of all. They completely deny the thing that then overtakes them and they become horrible to others with no awareness at all of what they are doing because they have deliberately split it away and denied its existence.

Darkness is a mirror. For us, for others. I am interested in exploring that. I am interested in hearing and seeing all the things another brings to the table. Because it’s a whole picture, not a partial one. And being able to see and hold the whole thing, well, that’s love.

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