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The Challenge of Change

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Have you noticed? Life is not fair.

Wait, let me rephrase that last sentence. Life is not always what we desire it to be. There are famines, earthquakes, wars, and senseless violence in all its forms and facets. Bad things happen to good people.

On a more mundane level, the cat leaves an unwanted present on the new carpet, some maniac cuts us off on the freeway, the boss coughs up a managerial hairball during one of the company’s team-building sessions.

ImpermanenceWhat to do? We crave stability, security, and control. Instead, what we get is impermanence.

Of course, Buddha pointed that out 2500 years ago. The flow of life is unceasing change. At the most fundamental level the seemingly solid lounger we sit in is filled with electrons whirling around nuclei of protons and neutrons. Einstein pointed out that matter and energy are interchangeable. More recently, findings in quantum physics and string theory confirm the random nature of our Universe. If we are at all reflective, this is unsettling.

What to do? We seek after what we perceive as pleasure and back away from what we perceive as painful. A homespun sage tells us pain is inevitable but suffering is optional. So what does that mean, anyway?

The cynic says, “Life’s a bitch and then you die.” Well, death and taxes are certain, but does life have to be “a bitch”? How do we come to grips with the life’s curve balls?

The Chinese calligraphy for crisis also means opportunity. And it is here that we begin our search for peace, meaning, fulfillment, and abundance.Crisis

It is at this critical juncture that we have the opportunity to turn our crisis into a quest. For what we are really searching for is wholeness, for our personal authenticity.

Growing old is not for sissies. We may be so terrified we turn back. We end our journey before we begin. We may slip back into denial, postponing the quest as long as we can. Or we may drape cosmetic changes on “the old me” while avoiding any profound change. Yet we continue to be plagued by the call of change.

There is only one way out, and that is through.

We all need people to advise and guide us through the challenges we face at mid-life and beyond. A Providers page will be added soon so you can learn what resources are available to you by joining Encores!