Change, change, change

Moon message FM August 2017


lassen 1 0817Right now, so much is changing. The kids are out of the house and independent. My husband has retired. I am in graduate school and expanding my career. Not to mention, the environment is changing, and who knows what is happening in the state or nation!

Some changes are large, and some are small. Some are easy to embrace—yes, I embrace change—hurrah! Unfortunately, other changes are difficult. Yea, I also resist change. Is it possible to be one way or the other?

The other day I hiked in Mt. Lassen National Park. Mt. Lassen is a volcano that last erupted in 1915. Even though that eruption was about 100 years ago, in evolutionary history, this time is very recent. Before Mt. Lassen, there was another volcano in that area, named Mt. Tehama. Mt. Tehama formed during the Pleistocene age (2 million to about 12,000 years ago), and this volcano was larger than present day Mt. Lassen. Lassen stands about 10,500 feet high, but Mt. Tehama is estimated to have been over 11,000 feet high. Mt. Tehama was active for 200,000 years and eventually all the eruptions and flows caused such a decline that the volcano collapsed. Where the volcano used to be is now a huge caldera.

While hiking in the forest around Mt. Lassen, it occurred to me that I was walking in this caldera. Once upon a time, that land had been deep in the earth. I was hiking in a place that had once been under a volcano! It is such a beautiful place, with tall pines, high waterfalls, and calm lakes. While hiking, I meditated on how this land has evolved and all the changes involved. Sometimes the changes are small and unnoticed, such as when I walked and caused the gravel to shift. Other times the changes are large and dramatic as when Mt. Tehama blew and collapsed. When that happened, probably the landscape was barren and dry for many years until the forest reclaimed itself.

Change happens and precipitates evolution. The land changes, and in order to survive, plants and animals have to adapt. One change causes another change, like a ripple effect that has far-reaching conclusions. Without adaptation, things end. With adaptation, things grow.

There is an analogy for humans. I have been embracing macrobiotics for many years, which is a spiritual discipline that promotes eastern thought. I share two concepts from this philosophy that are relevant to this moon message. The first is, “Everything that has a front has a back.” The second is, “The bigger the front, the bigger the back.”

The front is that change is hard. The front is that change requires attention. The back is that change initiates evolution and growth. The back is that by acknowledging change and learning to adapt, a person matures. The back is that there is potential for progress in unforeseen ways.

Additionally, the larger and more dramatic the change, there is more potential for progress. When the change is huge, the evolution can be even more phenomenal. Big change equals big development.

In my meditations, I have come to understand something important. Sure, some changes are easy and fun. Other changes are challenging. My questions for myself are these: Is it possible that I can be at peace amidst all these changes? Can I learn what is needed? Can I approach the changes with presence and calm?

One perspective is that these years of profound change are more than adaption. These years are beyond simple evolution. These years provide an opportunity to grow in huge ways. While growth can happen physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually, perhaps the biggest growth happens in the approach of enlightenment.

Enlightenment is elevation of consciousness that incorporates the feeling of internal peace regardless of the outward situation. Perhaps this is what is going on—there are so many changes because this is the time to cultivate peace and usher in enlightenment.

What do you think? Is it true for you—the bigger the change, the bigger the learning? Is this a time of enlightenment?

Peace. Julia 


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