This is a theme that has been with me for some time. I think that it may have taken this form from some lyrics in a song from the 60s band Love – unfortunately, my vinyl is unsearchable at the moment, so I can’t check which song … or, maybe it is from something completely different. In any case, what I’d like to say is that not only do we need both the beauty AND the ugly, we also need to see, feel, hear, taste and be immersed in both and everything in between.
The idea is as old and simple as life and death, but it is what gives us perspective. It is the balance! Indeed, a death need not be a bad thing, whether that be a person or an idea, it can allow something new to grow. I don’t mean that we should kill all the old people to make fertiliser. Nor does something need to die to allow something else to grow. We learn something about life from witnessing death. We learn, or at least we should, about balance and the complexity of the world around us.
We see this in writing, in stories, all of the time. The protagonist is always faced with hardship as they search for something better, either in themselves or in their world. If you are writing a character and they are either good or bad, black or white, then your character will be flawed.
The same holds, if we consider society itself as a character. Can we really separate utopian and dystopian societies, or do we just see that one is just slowly turning into the other and back again? There are always elements of both present.
Nothing is black and white. We live in a world of grey, and that’s a good thing.