Functioning Within the Cycle of Perpetual Change

How often in our modern society do we embrace the opportunities of change?

A street performer in Riva Del Garda, Italy makes his way towards his "office".

How often do we stand at the edge of a fire, embrace the heat and then leap through the flames to find the results of that change we are so desperately seeking? For some of us, this leap of complete faith in the potential outcome is a welcome yet uncomfortable occurrence. We recognize that the intensity of the discomfort now is a direct result of the potential of what lies on the other side.

Yet, this is not always the case. Most people fear change with an intensity that is manifested in the current state of our society. We’ve become so complacent and expectant of the amenities and social institutions that we are all engrained within, that the very thought of any upheaval to the expected routine brings about a desperate fear that has no remedy- besides maintaining the status quo.

We see this in our antiquated educational systems, designed for an era long before technology became mobile and knowledge instantly accessible. We see the fear of change in our political institutions to such a perverse degree that we’ll actually vote for the very person who would wish us dead or render us in utter poverty rather than elect a person who might bring about actual, tangible change- not merely use it as a slogan of propaganda. We see it in the demise of our very economic structures and our inability to force change to occur at all levels of the systems we’ve become enslaved to.

And we see it on the faces of the people we pass on the street everyday. This quiet desperation of the souls who need to change the patterns of their life, but do not have the knowledge or the will to do so. The status quo is much easier to maintain.

And we see the fear of change in our own eyes.

Even if we are an agent of change, we still feel the sharp sting of the unknown. We are blessed with the ability to recognize the source of our fear, and if we’re truly lucky, we’re able to act upon it.

If we lose the ability to change, as a collective whole and as enlightened individuals, we will never evolve into the people we are meant to become.

Our society will never fully embrace all of its potential. In our misery at maintaining the lives we’ve created and the societies we’ve built, we will act out upon one another with anger, resentment and fear. We will continue the paths of destruction that bring us a perverse sense of comfort.

We will continue to destroy the things we love most and the people we cherish through our inability and unwillingness to do the difficult work of changing the paths we are walking down.

Books for sale on the streets of Paris.

If we fail to enact change, we will continue to justify the deaths of others as benefiting the greater good. We will continue to look away as parents abuse their children, as people starve in the streets and children grow into adulthood having never seen what love actually looks like.

We will close our eyes as the world which was handed to us shrivels and dies a tragic death.

For to truly evolve, we must function within the cycle of perpetual change- individually and as a collective. We must have the ability to question our premises, understand the sources of our prejudices and judgements and look beyond the truths we thought were absolute and see what lies beneath.

We must have the strength and the wisdom to dissect the institutions we live within and the relationships we’ve cultivated and truly decide their value and whether or not they play any role in nourishing the person we’ve become.

If we are to evolve and embrace all the potential that lies before us, we must open our eyes to our reality and change it. Now. We must embrace change with all the respect and joy it deserves and step towards the vision of what lies beyond that radical change.