Cognition & Reality

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

It’s All Good

Filed under: Basic Goodness,Perennial Philosophy — drtone @ 8:50 am

In “The Wire,” the HBO miniseries widely considered the best TV drama ever, Stringer Bell, the big drug dealer’s chief henchman, played with impeccable menace and ghetto accent by the the British actor Idris Elba, often meets difficult situations with the expression, “It’s all good.” If that isn’t enough to give the idea of goodness even in the midst of evil its own bad reputation, I don’t know what is. Part of what makes “The Wire” so good, however, is that the wisdom it imparts is not sequestered in the light.

Chögyam Trungpa presented the idea of “basic goodness,” the recognition that every situation is an opening, a passage into spacious existence. In practice, this means that emotional pain indicates the doorway to  our own nature. It is the perfection of imperfection, owning our “mistakes” as tools for digging around in the unconscious.

Last night, one of my dachshunds, the charismatic, indefatigable Gretchen, pissed on the rug in the office of one of the other people in my suite, the actual leaseholder, “my suite-lord,” as I call him. He’s a great guy, and I had been glad to see him, but Gretchen’s pissing on his rug led to his pointing out, in apparently stored-up annoyance, a stain she had left on the carpet in our waiting room a year ago. I was thrown.

That was the Great Gift, because forced me to examine how and why this series of events had driven me into a dark corner, requiring me to explore that space: the fears I have about losing my literal and figurative place; my anger at Gretchen, knowing that she had flipped a switch and at the same time wishing she hadn’t; and of course my fears about being ineffective as a therapist, something that would be tested shortly by a client who was coming to me in an hour or so. Naturally, the client’s concerns are specifically about examining and owning her own dark spaces. I was therefore prepared to teach her and for her to teach me. And so it goes.



  1. So, yes. This might be my favorite blog so far. It’s very interesting to me about some supposed bad guy in “The Wire” that he used that expression “it’s all good.” He was right. I haven’t seen the series yet, but I’m looking forward to it. I may be able to comment on the use of that expression in the context of the t.v. series with more info. in the context of the series.

    Until then, and until the end of time, “it’s all good.”

    Comment by annie wallack — Tuesday, 28 September 2010 @ 10:56 am | Reply

  2. […] Basic Goodness Filed under: Uncategorized — drtone @ 11:43 am In yesterday’s post, I discussed the goodness underneath areas of emotional conflict. Because the pain radiating from […]

    Pingback by More Basic Goodness « Cognition & Reality — Wednesday, 29 September 2010 @ 11:43 am | Reply

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