In Buddhism there is this idea that everything changes; nothing is permanent. For most of us, this isn’t something we embrace. If anything, we are reluctant to change. It can throw us off balance—rattle the cage we have built for ourselves. Change can require us to stand for or against something that is being shifted.
As a young girl I embraced change. I wanted something different than what my parents chose—wanted to run from where I was, looking for the next adventure. When I stopped running I found what I thought was steadiness in a job and a relationship. Until the day came that would alter my understanding of impermanence forever… in one year I had a near death experience, a wonderful friend died, and what I thought was my forever love ended. Then I understood the teachings. This idea of control is just that—an idea. We will all get old, fall sick and die. Change is inevitable and begins from the moment we are born.
According to the teachings of the Buddha, life is comparable to a river. It gives the appearance of one continuous flow, when in reality it is not. It is a joining together of one moment to another, just as our cells in our body die and create new ones: constant change. Our physical and mental states also fluctuate; change is a continuous movement. Impermanence and change are thus the undeniable truths of our existence.
The practice of yoga teaches us that every time we step on the mat is a new moment. I invite you to welcome change, let go of the idea of control, and embrace each new moment before you with an open heart.