Tuesday, June 5, 2012

There is a saying that the only constant thing in life is change. The older I get the more I think that is true. Perhaps that’s the universe’s way of seeing that we don’t get bored. But then, boredom is often replaced by other emotions that are less welcome. From all of this, however, we seem to manage to learn something.

I remember years ago having a friend who was very much into computers. He was working with artificial intelligence and was doing research at what is now Carnegie Mellon University. He tried to explain to me many times the virtues and advantages of computers. I didn’t listen very well. “I’ll never use a computer,” I told him. How wrong I was about that. My change came not too many years after those conversations. I acquired a computer and really became a fan when I began to use it at income tax time. My wife and I had a small business and for years I did the accounts in pen and ink. We were busy with the business spring, summer and fall and I became lax in keeping up with daily accounts. Both my wife and I simply kept receipts of purchases made, material acquired, etc. in no particular order. When income tax time came I made a crash effort to get the books in order. I would neatly itemize months of transactions and then invariably my wife would come in with a whole new batch of receipts. “I forgot these,” she would say and hand me items that had to be entered into three or four or more months’ records. When I acquired a computer and became familiar with spreadsheets that automatically inserted items in chronological order I became convinced that the computer was a necessity and, moreover, my friend.

My change to a computer was voluntary on my part, but some changes I have experienced were not. They were imposed on me and many were not to my liking. And yet I cannot say that, in the long run, they turned out to be totally negative. They always proved to be of benefit when I accepted them and allowed them to be part of my life. I have come to believe that changes that we elect to bring into our lives, if well thought out, improve our lives. Changes that are imposed upon us by the universe, if properly accepted and even welcomed, improve our souls.

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