Guarded Curiosity

The Many Shades of Yang to your CURIOUS Yin

Oluwamayowa Ajewole
3 min readAug 15, 2021
Photo by Alex Padurariu on Unsplash

Everyone was born with a measure of curiosity. Being curious or inquisitive is constant in life, there’s no changing that. People love to ask questions directly or indirectly, especially children.

Remember that Nigerian advert where the young boy asked “Why is water wet?” That has always cracked me up, weirdly. In fact, that was probably the start of the infamous argument among Nigerian students about how water isn’t actually wet in and of itself. (story story…)

Back to curiosity, how we channel what we are curious about and how invested we are in being curious about things are exactly what makes us different. To create a balance for each person, a balance that defines your personality, the extent to which you are curious about things is very vital.

Let’s use the Yin Yang expression to explain what I mean by ‘balance into personality’. Imagine that the whole circle is your personality, the yin is your curiosity and the yang is the guardian of your curiosity. Both of them have to co-exist to give you your full circle.

Photo by Robert Katzki on Unsplash

Still imagining, say your yang houses different colours. Say when we look closely, we realise that it is a tunnel of different colours with the most prominent colour being at the end of the tunnel and birthing the other colours. How beautiful!!!

The yang refers to those things that curb the excesses of your yin. Yin is your curiosity and yang happens to be the guards of your curiosity. The yang stands for those ideas, learned behaviours, mindsets and beliefs that help structure or direct your curiosity.

Now, on the surface, we see a white dot on Yin (representing a guard that causes curiosity) and a black dot on Yang (representing a curiosity that causes guards). But, we are not even talking about that, else we would spend the rest of the article being confused.

The point is our curiosity is usually curbed by many things because it can really run wild. There is no telling how many questions our mind has for the world per time. For example, you see someone with crutches and you just want to ask “How come?”

What stops you in your tracks, if you indeed even stop yourself, is the fact that you know the principles of politeness and courtesy. You probably know that you shouldn’t jump the gun till the person grants you access to asking that question. Your politeness is a shade of yang that curbs the curious yin.

Photo by Bernard Hermant on Unsplash

Beliefs, especially faith, are like the prominent colour at the end of the tunnel. They provide other colours that are guards in the yang. For me, it is my faith in Christ.

There are many things I get curious about but in a different way than others would. This is because I have let my faith be the prominent colour that produces other colours that are guards in my yang.

You can bet that I am a curious cat. I still get stares from my mother on why I want to ask too many questions or play dumb to ask more questions. But, my curiosity isn’t unguarded. The colours in my yang redirect and channel my yin.

Same with other people. They are who they are because of the colours in their yang. All of those things co-exist with their curiosity to create who they are. Even those who seem like they are not curious about anything are feeding their curiosity with the colour of ignorance in their yang.




Oluwamayowa Ajewole

Christian, Nigerian, Writer. Writing my thoughts as they are😉