It’s late summer. For school children, for parents, even for businesses and government there can still be a sense of moving slower, taking time. Even John Oliver, who has spent the past three months substituting for Jon Stewart on the Daily Show indicated recently that summer is usually a slow time in the news cycle (presenting a particular challenge to cynics, comics, pundits and the like). Oliver went on to say, however, that this particular summer has stood as quite an exception what with the SCOTUS decisions severely impairing the voting rights act and supporting gay marriage, Paula Deen’s racism on review, a new British Kinglet, and, for Oliver, the unspeakable thrill of having Regis Philbin essentially knighting him with an end-of-interview kiss on the top of the head.
Off Oliver’s script were things like the end for now of the Trayvon Martin murder case, the NSA scandals and countless other crucial change moments in the country and the world. But earlier Oliver had quite seriously expressed concern, thoughts, prayers for the people of Egypt as that country moves through the intensity, confusion and hideous violence collectively known by the media as “unrest.”
This is the it. Change happens. It takes all forms. Because of it’s volatile nature, because change can feel bad and fearful and because it can involve great loss, the whole idea of change can be pushed away. It can even be fought. But nothing stops it.
This weekend, I was in most southeastern Canada for a change — the wedding of two precious and astonishing friends. Change was everywhere. In the overcast shifting to sun, in the roadwork nearby, in the moods that passed through the people gathered for the large change of a marriage sanctioned and celebrated.
And this is really all I have to say for this week. It’s summer. The world and its change can feel slower. But any look at headlines, at gardens and flowers showing bounty and their gradual withdrawal, at the shifts and surprises of our everyday lives shows us that there’s no stopping this change thing.
Perhaps change is actually the location of the peace saints and sages have so long described. The eye of the storm, the center of the spinning top, the unbroken silence of deep ocean no matter what goes on above, the vast sigh of the universe composed as it is primarily of empty space. August.
Change is no small challenge for human experience. We know that. There’s no way around it, and we know that, too. Here in the end of summer, the period that holds the reputation of moving more slowly there’s the chance to check into the possibility that nonstop change also presents the perfect opportunity to stop, to check and see which is the constant — noise and activity or stillness and peace.
Check it out. Let me know what you find.