All change and growth involves three steps: 1. DISSATISFACTION: Because of outer events or inner feelings, you decide your current situation no longer works for you. 2. CONFUSION: Normally, a period of confusion follows in which you challenge your old beliefs. You begin to fantasize how things could be different. This transitional period could last a day, a month, or a year, or more ... until something happens. 3. ACTION: Someone helps you to make a decision, or an opportunity presents itself, or you manage to attain clarity. Once this happens, you take action and, ideally, manifest a more satisfying life.
But oh how we resist change. Out of fear, we cling to what is and do everything within our power to keep people and things in their familiar static positions. If you’re in a good relationship, you certainly don’t want your union to spin off in some unexpected direction that will cause you anxiety. You want things to remain just as they are, solid and predictable. But soon suffering arises, because life is constantly changing.
“It is your resistance to what is that causes your suffering,” said Buddha. Life is change. Change is what is. If not today, tomorrow, or next month, or next year. Everything in your life will eventually change.
Trouble starts with our desire for permanency. Desire is a matter of living in the future--of sacrificing the present for the future. And desires always disappoint. If you don’t get what you desire you become frustrated. If you do get what you desire you’ll still be frustrated, because what you desired will never live up to your expectations. Sooner or later you’ll find you were chasing illusions.
And permanency is a great big faulty assumption, because it simply does not exist.
But what if you could lock up life so that permanency were possible? Nothing would ever change. Tomorrow would be a repetition of today. Next year, everything the same. Five years down the road, exactly the same. BORING! STATIC! DEPRESSING! It is the not knowing that makes life exciting and generates ALIVENESS.
So the idea is to be courageous enough to embrace change, knowing that your soul is in search of new experiences to provide GROWTH. Growth is why you incarnated upon the earth. But you can’t experience growth living a static life. A static (stagnant) life may protect you from some problems, but at what cost and for how long? Stagnation is a process of drying up--allowing your life to become dull, colorless, lifeless. No aliveness. No joy. Watch some TV, go to work, come home, watch some TV go to work, come home. Treadmill.
Even if your actions in a quest for growth cause you pain, at least when you’re hurting you know you’re alive. And the pain will generate more action, which will lead to more aliveness. Soon you’ll find yourself back among the living.
If your life has become lifeless, what can you possibly fear from change? Explore your DISSATISFACTION, allow time for CONFUSION, and then make up your mind and ACT to manifest a more satisfying life.
Peace & Light for the New Year--Dick Sutphen