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In Buddhist and other traditional eastern spiritual thinking, the problems of humankind, in terms of the many negative aspects of human existence, such as crime, war, greed, hatred or violence are considered to stem primarily from what can be regarded as a double source, or what is called Duality. Examples of the negative aspects of duality in terms of human conduct or contentment, are the pairings of such things as love & hate, good & bad, right & wrong, honesty & dishonesty, feast & famine or health & illness. The concept of duality can be viewed as the absence of unity or singular wholeness and oneness, like the singular aspects of such things as unconditional love, complete honesty, perfect goodness or consummate compassion.

The seeming universal presence of the oppositional condition of duality, is considered in the eastern philosophy of the Tao from China, as an essential essence of existence, as illustrated by the fundamental oppositions of Yin and Yang. This pairing represents attributes such as male & female, creative & receptive, light & dark or heaven & earth. The nature and condition of material existence is considered to be based upon the pairing of opposites. Thus singular entities can have stable, continuous, particular and individual qualities and conditions such as the mass and heat of the sun which can remain fairly constant for eons. Opposed to this condition is the qualities and conditions of space, that can be said to be absent mass and heat and which represents expanse, in which dense objects such as the sun can float and move.

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