Or as Ecclesiastes says, “There is nothing new under the sun.”
Yes, history does repeat itself, but not exactly. Universal energies are constantly flowing—everything is in movement. Thus nothing can be exactly the same even though it may look the same as it comes around again. And here is where we can make a new choice.
Each moment is a choice moment, and the choice we make determines how things will look and feel when they come back to us. For they will. Everything we send out comes back according to our attitudes and intentions.
Each time we repeat a story we edit it (usually without realizing we are doing so.) Our memories that seem so solid and rock certain also change. We think we see the past clearly, but it changes each time we think about it, for everything is in flow—even memories.
It is an absolute fact that we can’t step into the same river twice. For when we step in it again the water has changed because the river flows. It may look the same, but it’s not.
So it is with life. Each moment is new. It’s not the same. It may be similar. We often think life is the same-old—same-old. But it isn’t. How could it be when everything is in flow?
When we think of our life as always being the same we may become discouraged, imagining that we will never learn this or that, etc, etc. We even think human nature will never change. But it has and it does.
Evolution is so slow that we usually don’t notice these tiny, incremental changes. So we assume things stays the same. Even mountains are in movement, though they don’t look it except when volcanos erupt.
It is wise to remind ourselves of the vibrant flow that is always occurring in and around us. Our perspective is our great power. We name and label things. We put things into categories. As we define them, so they become to us.
If we say things never change we may get caught up in the illusion that we will always have such and such, or be as we are now. This outlook leads to suffering!
To appreciate each moment just as it is, knowing it won’t come by this way again is a great secret of happiness. Each moment is unique and precious.
But how are we seeing it?
For instance right now I am looking out at a dark, rainy day. Another rainy day in Portland, one might say. So what else is new?
I can wear the face of dissatisfaction and feel sorry that the sun is not shining. I can lament about miserable dark, grey days.
When I do this I miss the truth that today is a whole new day—a new experience. If I layer it over with my sad attitude I lose the reality of what is today. I miss this moment, which means I miss much of life.
We may think our times of pain, loneliness and sadness will never change. Or we can look closely at what we are thinking and feeling this moment. Small differences, nuances that are slightly altered with each breath, make this a new experience. Life then becomes an adventure.
When life loses its flavor we can look more closely and see that we are seeing life through a belief system that perhaps is impatient, wanting change and dissatisfied the way it is.
Impatience causes stress and unhappiness. These attitudes go against the very fabric of the universe as it is never impatient.
Instead we can choose to bring mercy to impatience and dissatisfaction. Mercy, compassion and forbearance will bring forth a softening of the heart and mind.
It all depends on our remembering that we choose our experiences. We are affecting our reality just by our thoughts and feelings. We can always choose compassion. We can make changes with compassion rather than anger or violence.
I believe all humans deserve compassion. It’s not easy to be human. We enter life rather traumatically to parents who most likely haven’t mastered the art of knowing how to parent skillfully. And there is no manual on this art!
Compassion, forgiveness does not mean that anyone goes free from the consequences of their actions. The universe sees to this in the form of karma. But we make wiser choices when we remember that we are all doing our best to live a life of meaning, of purpose, and that we all get confused and feel lost at times.
Our compassion and forgiveness frees us up from mean, spiteful attitudes and actions that cause more unpleasant karma.
I believe by choosing compassion we will make positive changes much more quickly. And life won’t feel like same-old, same-old.