Understanding Change

by Jarek Czechowicz
You can probably remember a time in your life that you wished would never change, but can you remember a time in your life when nothing changed? No, because no ‘thing’ is stable. At some level everyone knows this, so why do people struggle with change? We often hear it said that they don’t know how to cope, or they don’t know how to let go, but there is another way of seeing change.
Change is often ignored when things seem familiar, during the smooth flow of everyday activities, and it becomes more apparent when you find yourself in new, exciting, frustrating, or frightening situations. Familiar situations allow you to get lost in thoughts or fantasies and that is why change goes largely unnoticed. But when something unfamiliar  happens then you begin to pay attention.
Unfamiliar situations can evoke an increased sense of presence and awareness, which is very pleasant when you’re on holiday in an exotic location. In some unexpected situations and before frustration, fear or relief sets arises, you might stop thinking for a while in order to register what is happening. It’s at those moments, when thinking subsides, that the essential and ever-present background to all change begins to reveal itself. However few people notice it because emotions and thoughts return so quickly and with such power that they veil its presence and draw your attention back into the flow of events. These events are the foreground of our experience.
We generally don’t notice backgrounds because our attention falls on the interesting things in the foreground, yet even thought, and life itself requires a background in order to be perceived or conceived. You might know this ever-present background as your awareness. Without it, you would not experience anything. Every change and every thought appears within this awareness.
Reflect on this: You think you’re having a thought when in fact a thought is arising in awareness. You think you’re having an experience when in fact an experience is arising in awareness. Even the thought that you’re having a thought is a thought arising in awareness. And thoughts are also constantly changing.
Change is not an issue when things are going well but what often happens when things go wrong? You suffer. Now here is the central point. Suffering appears only when you identify yourself with your thoughts. When you recognise that you are also the awareness beyond thought then struggles and suffering will subside. This doesn’t mean that you will never again encounter a painful or challenging situation. But it does mean that you will be available to deal with the situation more fully, from a perspective of greater freedom.
No change is greater than you because you are the ever-present awareness behind the change you’re experiencing.

About the author: Jarek Czechowicz creates words and music for awakening. Jarek offers contemporary universal chants, music in the moment, natural meditation, and insights to open the heart. His work has been featured in magazines as diverse as Living Now and BRW. To book Jarek or to attend one of his events visit www.jarekc.com