By 1980 I had been studying what might be best described as a Christian Mystic path. Most of my friends at that time might have been described as California Cosmics or Christian mystics or New Agers. Though it is useful to say that both relatives and friends come in all sorts of philosophical and religious or even non-religious shapes and sizes in all our lives.
I had just married for a second time and was 32 at the time. My new wife was more non-dualistic in her beliefs whereas although I was attracted to non-dualism I still found myself (at least emotionally) in the old white and black, good and bad, right and wrong kind of thinking that I had been raised with. However, I had discovered by this time that this kind of thinking wasn't very useful to someone as intuitively developed as I was or as intelligent as I was. So I began to see dualism as something more useful for children or for adults who are afraid of finding out the truth about themselves and life around them. In other words dualism is most useful to people generally afraid of themselves and the world around them.
Whereas non-dualism is more useful for those brave enough to see the world and themselves as they really are which can be both terrifying and rewarding at the same time. So to move into the world of non-dualism for a dualist is very scary at first.
What won me over to this way of thinking was to begin to see everything like the weather. Is rain or snow or drought good or bad? The real answer is that it is good for some and bad for others but it is not universally good or bad for everyone in every situation. I found this to be true of everything in life. In studying college philosophy I had realized by age 21 that Descartes was actually right when he said, "There is nothing so good that no bad may come of it and nothing so bad that no good may come of it."
I found Descartes saying one of the most useful pragmatic things ever uttered about life in the physical world. When you compare someone living in a dualistic superstitious world to that saying one can only perceive such people as basically being childish or non-adult in their thinking. However, as I have matured I have begun to see it differently. What I see now is that only a few people have the strength and courage or mental or physical or emotional health to move towards non-dualism from dualism because of all the costs to their lives.
However, if one doesn't begin to fully understand both themselves and the world around them they will only remain victims of both.
So, in the end I decided that it was a worse outcome for me to stay a dualist than it was for me to begin to embrace non-dualism. Though one has to develop compassion for all life in the universe to do this in what I would consider a useful way, still it is the only way to truly even begin to understand how we all are and how the universe really is.
So now, if someone says "Something bad or good happened" I have to think about who or what it is good or bad for and whether this will eventually help or hurt those individuals left or whether lessons will be learned from what happened that might make life better for those still around. In thinking this way one begins to have wisdom and to become infinitely more useful to oneself and all one's family and friends as well as all life in the universe.