In the Dhamma, we speak of kusala and akusala dhammas...
Kusala dhammas are regarded as wholesome or skilful ~ these include wisdom, generosity and lovingkindness.
Akusala dhammas are regarded as unwholesome or unskilful ~ these include delusion, greed and aversion.
It is also established within Theravada Buddhism that kusala and akusala dhammas cannot co-exist.
I have observed a potential parallel here with certain Christian teachings I have seen online...
Frank Sant'Agata wrote:Love and fear are the only emotions we as human entities are able to express. All the others are just sub-categorical emotions. For example, on love's side there is joy, peacefulness, happiness, forgiveness, and a host of others. On the other hand, fear reflects: hate, depression, guilt, inadequacy, discontentment, prejudice, anger, attack, and so on.
Love and fear can not coexist. Where one is, the other can't be also. The one will leave immediately, should the other enter its presence. If you find yourself in a situation where you are experiencing great joy, and are suddenly overtaken by fear, the joy is gone! But it works the other way too: If you are terrorized, frightened, or otherwise threatened in any way, all you need to do is turn to the love within, and the fear disappears.
John 4.18 wrote:There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears punishment has not been perfected in love.
All of which brings me to my question....
Could the couplet of kusala and akusala be profitably understood as love and fear respectively?