heads or tails?

I wish I had never been taught the phrase. By culture. By happenstance. By tradition. A simple way to fairly choose between one thing and another.

I understand that a coin has to land on one side or the other. Pennies do not generally hang out on the edge, the outer circle, the in-between. They fall and show either heads or tails.

I know this is only one of the contributing factors to the either/or paradigm dwelling in me. Among countless others is simply my humanity. In my head there are only two ways of seeing any given situation, problem, or way of being. My way or any other way.

But if I look at a penny and take a moment to consider it, I find so much more than heads or tails. There is a third side running around the edge of the circle, touching both sides and making them part of the same coin. A rim. An outer boundary uniting the one side with the other.

There is a face. A president. A man with heart and passion and struggles and soul. There is a building. A meeting place where people gather and attempt to make decisions for the good of millions of people.

And there is also a solid mass of copper, which is simply imprinted with pictures and symbols in such a way that creates the illusion of sides. But make no mistake. A coin is one whole piece of metal.

There are parts and the whole and an infinite number of aspects to take into account from any given perspective. Not just heads or tails. Right or wrong. Black or white. My way or the highway.

But for some reason, I am prone to simplifying things and creating sides. I think perhaps I need my mind and my heart to expand so that I can hold this wide-angle paradigm for longer than a moment.

There is more to life than either or. There is both, and, more.

So, a penny for your thoughts…..

9 thoughts on “heads or tails?

  1. Eiley says:

    Rebes, In my community we use the phrase both/and continually. It seems to free us up to embrace so much more! I am so thankful to live in the freedom this brings me!

  2. free penny press says:

    It’s not always easy to be neutral, but it can be done.. Take from one penny to another 🙂

  3. […] Mimi is a generous contemplative – Between Night And Day; as is the marvellous Rebecca Koo – Heads or Tails; and Bill Wooten’s – The Present Moment brings a wonderful word from Thomas Merton – […]

  4. You are such a fabulous writer. You know that right?!!? Great post. It left me thinking….:)

  5. I must thank you for the efforts you’ve put in writing this site. I really hope to see the same high-grade content by you in the future as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has motivated me to get my own site now 😉

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