The day has the active yang energy which melts into the restful yin of darkness. So, the art of living consists in balancing these two energies.
We all have seen the beautiful black and white swirling circle of yin and yang created by Chinese philosophers. It is the pictorial way of the Chinese for decoding the universe. Through this symbol, they have described how seemingly opposite or contrary forces may be complementary, interconnected and interdependent in the natural world, and how they may give rise to each other as they interrelate to one another. Anybody who dives deeper into reality will find that the opposites which appear to be against each other are inseparable friends: they are two halves of one whole. From yin comes the receptive feminine principle; from yang comes the creative masculine principle. The question is how this understanding can be used in human life? It is easy if you can perceive them as part of your daily life, not hidden somewhere deep under the sea. They are so agile; they continuously change their positions. When we are talking, we use the yang energy, when we listen, we are in the receptive yin energy. While sipping tea, the cup is yang but the tea inside is yin. The day has the active yang energy which melts into the restful yin of darkness. So, the art of living consists in balancing these two energies.
Instead of getting into obscure mysticism to explain this simple and profound phenomenon, Osho gives an example of the everyday human experience. He says that basically, the polarities can be named man/woman: the masculine, the feminine, Shiva and Shakti, which brings them very close to our heart — we know this duality. The problem is, the man is attracted to the woman, the woman is attracted to the man, and yet when they are together, they constantly fight. They cannot live separately, and they cannot live together either. It simply shows that they are half without each other, and together they become one. In that moment of oneness, they are ecstatic, but then comes the ego. This oneness, this bliss, is it masculine or feminine? In fact, this oneness is neither masculine nor feminine: It is beyond gender.
If the man and the woman learn the art of surrendering to this oneness, not holding on to their separate egos, they will dissolve into a oneness of existence. The feminine principle is receptive, and the masculine principle is creative, and both can only go together. Man’s creativity helps the woman to flow into her receptivity. This receptivity of the woman is not only biological, but it is also spiritual. Behind all great poets, you will find the inspiration of a woman. The women have not themselves been great poets — they need not be — but no great poetry is ever born without a woman. She functions as a lighthouse.
The balance of yin and yang is important for our well being. If yin is stronger, yang will be weaker, and vice versa. Yin and yang can interchange under certain conditions so that they are usually not yin and yang alone. In other words, yin elements can contain certain parts of yang, and yang can have some components of yin.