Let’s not obsess over nature. Nurture is important too.

Or in other words: we need Yin AND Yang. Not just one side. It’s obvious in theory, but in practice people don’t want both. It’s uncomfortable — but needed.

Lucy the Oracle
11 min readApr 12, 2024
Photo by Alex Padurariu on Unsplash

(Yes I’m pinning this post, because if you want to get to know me at all, you need to know what I’m saying here)

A lot of the conflicts I deal with have to do with this topic. I’m too solar and the other person is too lunar; I’m too hands-on and the other person is too much of a theorist; I attack blatantly, and the other person is passive-aggressive. I’m a nurturer, and the other person a naturalist. I make life happen, but they’re happier when life happens to them.

Or in a more poetic metaphor: I breastfeed, while the other person cares more about birth itself. (But a mother needs both to keep the baby alive, doesn’t she?) Oh, did I make it harder to accuse me of simping for masculinity now? Yeah, too bad. Guess we’ll just have to accept that “Yang” is not necessarily masculine. Deal with it!

I tend to butt heads with women, extremely Yin women, Yin to a surreal extent. These women always go on to accuse me of internalised misogyny or being a “pick me” or similar stuff… But am I? Or could it be that I’m not the intolerant one? Projections are comfortable, aren’t they?

Regardless… I think it’s time for me to stop with the articles begrudging the existence of difficulties in my life (that’s the “little dot of Yin” inside my Yang predominance, isn’t it?) — I won’t delete them unless they have things I later learn are misinformation. I like seeing my own evolution over time. But I’m taking a shift from now on. I’ll start to make USE of these circumstances that insist in staying in my life against all efforts to push them away. Maybe they can become helpful.

After all, I used to be quite hateful without realising. I mean, sure, a lot of things frustrate me genuinely — it’s not “hate for no reason” — but I used to focus too much energy on these situations because how dare they not change and not respond to my constant “doing”. Now I’m trying out something new: I’ll accept what is, and deliberately focus on love. If some don’t want my love, okay, goodbye, hasta la vista. I tried. And if they keep pestering me and trying to “break” me, I’ll perhaps use this energy productively. For example, as fuel for engagement and visibility. “Oh, you guys are putting time and effort in trying to shape me to your container? Well, that means you’re invested in me. So, let me show you all I’ve got”. Right? If I was irrelevant, no-one would pester me.

iPhoto by Jacob Vizek on Unsplash

I’m anticipating one possible thought a reader could have now, and I agree with it. “Well, Lucy, if you’re attracting people who are too one thing, that can only mean you’re not innocent either, you’re on the other extreme of the spectrum”. Opposites attract. That makes sense indeed, and this is one of the issues I’m internally dealing with — the quest for balance. It’s a healthy and desirable goal to have, regardless of where it takes you… Or whether or not it will lead to “attracting” a more diverse pool of people.

In fact, I have a pet peeve with the whole concept of a “law of attraction”. It’s not that I don’t believe it — I do, I’m very open-minded — but I’m not a big fan of the ego obsession that is hidden under its surface. I never fully liked this “law of attraction” grop-think (browse my old stuff and you’ll read that), but only now I’m starting to realise why. I mean: when you say “I attract”, well, that’s it, isn’t it? YOU attract. As if you had your own “gravitational centre”. As if everything else spins around you [and yours]. Again, I’ll repeat: it’s not necessarily wrong. I don’t disbelieve it. But is THAT where we should put our focus? Matter of focus, guys. It’s not about believing or disbelieving. I think even though we are “magnetic” to some extent (note to the neurodivergent: take metaphorically any isolated terms between quotes), perhaps it’s more ethical to take this as a “footnote” of our lives, instead of the main thing at play. The main thing could be life itself, and all the beings it encompasses. If a certain kind regularly crosses your path, well, okay, perhaps “you attract it”, but that’s just the ego level of interpretation there. Just the footnote. A deeper and more meaningful level could be: what do we do with what they are bringing to your table? See how the focus shifts from “you” to “they”.

And when you shift that focus, you’ll stop trying to find ways to repeal these people you don’t like. Instead, maybe you’ll start trying to work WITH (and not AGAINST) life “as is” right here and right now.

Excessively “Yin” people can’t take feedback that is less than flattering (and sometimes, in the very severe cases of self-loathing, not even flattery will do, because it will sound manipulative to them). It’s not that they’re “too sensitive”, I don’t know, some of them could be but some others are not. There’s no correlation. The real issue here isn’t sensitivity or lack thereof. It’s entitlement. They just stay in that receptive position and feel entitled to have others fix whatever they perceive as a wrong done to them. I mean, sure, on a surface level, it sounds “fair” — but it’s not. Can you see what I mean? You can’t expect others to fix a wrong for you, what are you, a 3-year-old toddler? You can give them consequences… But the fixing is on you. I’m not even disagreeing that the perceived wrong is a real wrong, I don’t know, again, there’s no correlation. But the FACT is: some situations are going to feel unfair, unresolved, uncomfortable, and what-have-you. The question isn’t “what is”. The question is “what do you do?”. See? Not a matter of nature; a matter of nurture. Like, okay, this thing happened, now what? Cry over spilled milk indefinitely? Or maybe, find out why it was spilled, clean it up, and try not to repeat it. I know “the milk itself” has a parcel of blame. I know the clumsy person also has a parcel of blame. Okay! But if it bothers you so much, why keep feeding the situation? Don’t like clumsy? Well, reduce contact with that person. Don’t like milk? Stop buying it. I hope the metaphor makes sense, I’m not telling anyone to stop feeling the feels. I’m telling you to stop letting them paralyse you.

Some of these excessively “Yin” people will even start fixing things themselves (remember the Yin/Yang symbol? There’s always a dot of the opposite in the middle), but not without begrudging the act. “Oh, you see? I’m working on boundaries, so back off”. Well, that’s a whole load of telling and very little showing, though, isn’t it? If what you need is a boundary, you set it. Not like a toddler pouting and saying “och! Alas! I’m HAVING to do it! Not fair!”, but as an adult that realises setting boundaries is a thing we do and it doesn’t need to be announced or begrudged. Right? If the correct course of action has an undertone of feeling entitled that things naturally not be in such a way as to warrant the action… Well… That just means you remain excessively “Yin”. You remain feeling entitled. Sure we can dream, but in the end of the day, reality remains there.

But you can’t have any of the above realisations if you’re coming from a position of entitlement, of “alas, how dare the part of life that happens to me not be perfect. Everything just is, no pattern can be changed by me, I just receive and receive”. Remember: there’s is NOTHING wrong with receptivity. There’s nothing wrong with “Yin” itself. We need both sides. Re-read the title. Entitlement is just an unhealthy excess.

Don’t jump to conclusions! I started by provoking the “Yin” crowd because you’re all around me. You read my stuff. But now I’ll move on to roast myself and my own crowd:

Photo by Michael Ankes on Unsplash

When you’re very “Yang”, you probably have a tendency to assume you’re not sensitive at all — until some teacher or master points it out and proves it to you, and you go like “ohhh… That’s fascinating. So I’m more complex than I thought”.

Uh, no, that’s not the main issue. I don’t think it’s a matter of “seeing the nuance” where you previously didn’t see it (and therefore thought, “no sensitivity to be had here”). Sometimes, it’s not even all that nuanced! Some “Yang” people can be highly sensitive, in fact. That’s not nuanced, that’s extreme. They just don’t realise it because they need to set the record straight about some concepts:

First of all, sensitivity is not correlated to how giving or how receiving you naturally are. (This is repeating something I said above, in the Yin rant). So, forget “sensitive” for a second. It’s important, but forget it for now. The spectrum you’re looking for isn’t sensitive-insensitive. It’s nurture-nature. “Yang” is not a naturalist; it’s a nurturer. Zero conformity and all initiative. I’m thinking extremes, but it’s just for ease of understanding.

When you’re too addicted to taking initiative, taking the lead, calling the shots… You end up thinking too much. Thinking can be good, but the problem is the “too much” part of it. That’s the addiction. Let’s just not.

You neglect the wisdom that comes from the feeling part of you. Not because you’re not sensitive — we went over that — but because you correlate “feeling” with “just reacting and receiving and getting nothing resolved”. It couldn’t be further from the truth, in fact. Soul dialogue is a powerful tool for change because it accesses a more holistic understanding of each given situation in life… Not just the linear in-the-moment automatic hypothesis that thinking provides. And this whole practice of soul dialogue is very “Yin”, isn’t it? It can be extremely uncomfortable for the immature “Yang” people out there. Not that I am particularly mature, but I’m perhaps mature enough at this stage of my life that I don’t DREAD it… But proceed with caution or you’ll just rage at my suggestion.

Soul dialogue can seem very naturalist at first: oh, this feeling I get on my chest is telling me X because X “just is” and maybe my thinking mind can’t grasp it yet but if I sit with it for a while I’ll start to agree. “Sit with it”, “start to agree”, “just is”, “grasp”… Phew! So many triggering words for us, the “Yang” crowd. They all point to the idea of unchanged and unchangeable nature, of helplessness, of powerlessness (this is a mistaken assumption, but I’m mentioning it here because it’s easy to make). This technique seeks precision and exactness in the attempt to pinpoint the cause of a feeling or its solution, which could also be a bit triggering for “Yang” people like myself. My automatic reaction to that, if I were perhaps a lot more immature, would be to say “oh, so I’m supposed to accept that only THAT ONE and THAT EXACT ONE WAY to describe what I’m receiving is good enough? There’s no room for pondering equally valid possibilities? There’s no tolerance for anything less-than? What kind of snobbery and high-maintenance fancy shit is this?”

I’m laughing at the above — it’s the exact thing 20-year-old-me would say. But today, I have a more nuanced perception of “fancy shit”. Namely: when you focus on the utmost level of precision, on not settling for anything but “the one” answer (or object, or result) you set out to find… You’re not necessarily being entitled. Yes, entitlement is on the same spectrum (like we saw above), but it’s just the extreme. We’re talking middle ground here, where soul dialogue can be found. What you’re truly doing is arriving at a bigger picture of the situation. That’s why it can be very “exact” and “without room for speculation” like that. You see, we speculate and generally speaking “think” of the details for the most part — these, indeed, for sure, can and should be dealt with through a lens of open-mindedness. (Or else you become intolerant, close-minded, hard-to-reason-with, and miss out on opportunities to connect with “the other” just because they aren’t the most perfect and seamless fit to your pre-existing “container”). The bigger picture, however, comes from a felt sense instead, and it has within it the details (that little dot of Yang) but it can’t itself be extrapolated from details.

Photo by Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash

Perhaps another distinction makes itself necessary here: it’s not that “Yin” people’s approach to understanding life is somehow wrong or flawed. It’s just misplaced. It’s great at dealing with the bigger picture! But it becomes a problem (again, as we saw above) if applied to details.

Or, to use a metaphor that is more in character for me: you zoom out when picking out scenes and syncing them to form a cohesive story… But if you don’t zoom in and do the fine-tuning, your final edit will be painful to watch, people will make memes and parodies of these “oopsie” moments, and your movie will fail. On the other hand, you can spend days making sure every transition is seemless, every word is synced and doesn’t contradict what the character said in the previous scene, there are no continuity errors, nothing out of place in the background, all these details are polished to perfection… But none of that is useful if the bigger story doesn’t make sense or has a reason to be! We need a Yin-Yang approach to editing movies! When we only use one or the other, the audience disapproves— and rightfully so.

In conclusion: I could keep fighting and fighting these “Yin” people in my life — and they could keep doing the exact same against me — but what would that achieve, other than more imbalance? Truth is, I will always be a bit beyond comprehension to them and vice-versa. If the immature ones aren’t willing to try and grow with this experience, and instead choose to keep resisting it, so be it. Go on, taunt me to your heart’s content. I’m done with the battle. The only thing I’m responding to, from now on, from this crowd, is a genuine attempt at connection.



Lucy the Oracle

Oracle learner / spirit worker based in Ireland. Buddhist/polytheist. I don't read minds. I don't change minds. I don't sugarcoat. Take my message or leave it.