In a conversation some time ago I said something that was interesting:
I basically said that “change” has become “monotonous”. I called this the “monotony of change”. Its the “same thing” over and over again and again and again. Something new, something novel . . . again and again and again. Yeah, yeah, yeah, blah, blah, blah and a whoopidadoo too. A new gadget, a new app, a new whatever. After awhile it all becomes the same.
At first, particularly when you’re young, its neat and exciting. But, as you grow up, this excitement wears off. You begin to find that its not the great thing it seemed to be . . . its just an endless ceaseless cycle of changing things. Everything becomes ‘just another change’. Change is no longer change but a big blur. In many ways, change has become so prevalent that its actually become boring. I often hear of something new and want to say “so? . . . its just another one to add to the collection”.
It doesn’t matter what is created today . . . it will change tomorrow. In a way, change has become a burden, an endless cycle of having to learn new things, of continually having to reorient yourself. Just the other day I stated “I’m tired of having to learn new things . . . its become exhausting”. Every time I turn around, it seems, I have to learn how to do something. And, rest assured, that will be gone in a little while and replaced with something new . . . and another thing to learn will return.
Not only that, I will probably have to buy something new as well. Just in my life I’ve seen things like BETA players, 8 track tapes, vinyl records, cassette tapes, floppy discs, VCR’s, laser discs, CD’s, DVD’s, personal computers, cell phones, and flash drives, and all that in about 40 years. With just the examples I gave above that’s one new thing every three years (and that’s only some of what has appeared!). My god, what more do we need? And every time something new appears the old one becomes out dated so you have to buy something new. Don’t you think that’s a little excessive?
All this change makes everything transitory . . . nothing lasts. Nothing has time to grow and implant its roots into life. Once this begins to happen change destroys it. It creates this quality of a ‘continually uprooting’ of life. Nothing seems to last. What’s here this year is out dated next year. When I hear of a new thing that everyone is raving about, that’s going to change life forever and improve our lives 100 fold, I always remind people that it will be out dated and replaced possibly as early as in a few months . . . if it lasts a number of years it will be a miracle.
Change also takes on a quality of a tyrant. Once change happens, you don’t have a choice but to change with it! In a way, all this change has actually taken our own ability to have control over our lives. How can we have control when we have to continually change to fit what’s new? Change controls us, we don’t control it. We are its minions, its slave. We have become helpless peons in all this. One of the ways people have dealt with this, I found, is by being a “Mr. agree-all” . . . they just agree with it all. If you agree with it all it gives the illusion of control. But remember . . . its an illusion. Watching people having to do this is not all that inspiring . . . I can see what’s going on . . . I can read between the lines . . . I can see it hides a helplessness.
And do all these new things really benefit us and make things easier? I don’t really think it does. My experience is that ‘getting used to something’ is just as valuable as some new thing to do it for you. The old line, “it will make life better”, has gotten old with me. I’m old enough to know that the bulk of these things do not make life better. In fact, as I’m getting older I find that I want to live without all this. Why? Because it makes life better!
I once said that “a good change would be an absence of change”. I think there is truth in that.
Something to think about . . .
Copyright by Mike Michelsen