Chromatic Obsessions and Contextual Reality

black and white

Black-and-white combinations have been sartorial and interior decor favorites with me, since the time that I can remember. I love creating accents with bright colors, but have always had a dislike for grey. Grey was Gloomy, Grey was Boring, Grey was Unfathomable, Grey was a fence-sitter, Grey could not be trusted. Till I realized that grey is the meeting point between Black and White.

Can we evaluate the difference between these two pictures ?


The first picture shows a clear line of demarcation between the two, and it is easy to take a position.


In the second picture, the two parts are flowing into each other, and have small imprints on the other half. This is the Yin-and-Yang symbol, which further evolved into classifying various facets of human nature.


This video defines the Yin and Yang beautifully :


Black and white are both achromatic, erroneously referred to as monochromatic. The movement from white to black is a continuum, with a lot of layers in between. Values and temperament of the same person might be spread over this range. We make different choices at different points of time, as the meeting point of mutual interest keeps shifting.

The complexity of creating and defining shades is much higher, than identifying different colors in a spectrum. Juxtaposition of one concept against another, facilitates expression in making a point. Though popular stories usually revolve around black and white, the finest stories have been the ones, that succeeded in emphasizing the various shades. Life compels us to find the optimal conditions, in which the best possible results can be achieved.

Black is total absorption, and white is total reflection of light. We recognize one, due to the absence of the other. Will good be appreciated without evil, or light without darkness? Anti role-models influence us more than role models. We are defined by what we don’t want to do in life.

The choice between positive and negative, or black and white is the easiest. But what does one do, in a world, increasingly filled with semi-negatives and several shades of grey. It is a new maths that we are grappling with.

Adding +2 to -1 will shift a number to the positive side of the scale. But the Mathematics of Morality is infinitely more complex.

Can two rights correct a wrong ?

  • Two wrongs do not make a right.
    What about several little wrongs?
    When added all together, do they amount to one giant injustice?
  • And if one wrong is a big one?
    How many smaller rights may be required to cancel it out?

How many ”forget” buttons does one hit before ”forgive” or “avenge” or “walk away into the sunset”?


The beauty of chaos is that everything finds its own place– whether by right, default or design. The beauty of reason is its adaptability to suit your purpose, and lack of objective parameters. This is neither a justification of evil, nor rationalization of untruths. Broad categorizations between Positive and Negative, Good and Evil have been made, keeping the larger human interest in mind, and will prevail.

This is just a thought that one has to traverse the whole terrain, to appreciate and understand the different nuances of life, and of Contextual Reality.

positive negative


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