Constancy and change

Close to half the population of the world is presently confined in one way or another. Some have spent many weeks at home, without even passing their front door, while others have a little more liberty, but generally speaking, everyone’s turbulent life has come to a standstill.

This has been frustrating for many. Our modern age puts a value on change; we follow cycles of innovation in our clothing, our technology, our entertainment, our careers–and sometimes, our relationships. Many seem to be terrified of boredom. And yet, paradoxically, we also place value on that which endures. A perfect example of this is gold, which has been considered precious since the dawn of humanity because, unlike dense and serviceable iron, it does not corrode, and remains bright for thousands of years.

We also value constancy in friendship. Our lives, like flowing rivers, touch, and a friendship that can survive all the floods and eddies and periods of drought that come along is rare and precious. Perhaps it is because, as Hazrat Inayat Khan says in this post, constancy is a reflection of eternity. In our innermost core, we long for the enduring certainty of Truth, for that which was, is, and will always be.

Why, then, are we so addicted to novelty? Perhaps that comes from our sense of frustration with each new experience, each new toy; we take things up, hoping that here, at last we will find what we are looking for, and then, after a week, or a month, or a year, we discover that we are dissatisfied, and we are still looking for something but we cannot say what it is.

But, as we could learn from our experience with friendships, constancy doesn’t just happen. It takes effort, and the maturity to recognise that momentary satisfaction is worth little in comparison with what comes from holding aloft the light of an ideal.

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