Change occurs one drop at a time. A little difference matters. They add up over time to become noticeable change.
Imagine a bathroom sink with the stopper in and a leaky faucet. If the faucet just leaks slowly one drop at a time, it still matters. Eventually the sink will fill then spilling onto the floor and finally flooding the entire house. The stopper is in and the system is then closed. Sure, it will take awhile, however that one drop at a time change matters.
Moshe Feldenkrais spoke of a cybernetic principle called the ‘just noticeable difference’. This is the most subtle or refined level of change that a system can notice. Cybernetics is the study of systems.
Back to the bathroom sink. First you have to notice the drip. Then you have to be curious enough to align with the change and act differently. The earlier in the process that the just noticeable difference is recognized, the more freedom the system has to align with the gradual change.
Change is constant. The Universe is a dynamic cybernetic system and is comprised of only change. Another word for change is movement….or better yet….moving. There is harmony with equal and opposite balancing changes.
There are so many models that describe or point to our direct experience of change. The ones that deeply recognize and are inclusive of the wholeness of existence can allow a profound transformation of our experience.
Feldenkrais work is one of those models. Daoist cosmology is another. Daoist cosmology is based on studying and aligning with change. Written thousands of years ago, the I Ching is a foundational work. I Ching….Book of Changes. It could be thought of as a book of noticing changes or noticing moving. Moshe Feldenkrais said ‘Movement is Life’.
Daoist cosmology recognizes the fundamental energies that comprise our world. Yin and yang. Yin is receptive, absorptive, feminine and characterized by darkness. Yang is active, conceptive, masculine and characterized by light. They are Sky and Earth. Life is the continual moving and change between them. The change is never-ending and happening one drop at a time. All the cycles within the Universe, grand or miniscule, follow this harmony of opposites.
The cycle of the seasons are easy to recognize. Often more difficult to align with, the benefits of aligning with these dynamic seasons of change are profound.
We just passed the summer solstice where the full manifestation of yang energy is apparent in the northern hemisphere. The longest day, the most light and the power of yang is so readily available to us. Counterbalance always exists in Nature. Full active yang energy is always countered with some receptive yin energy. You know the one drop of black in the mostly white side of the Tai Chi symbol. That is where we are now.
It is often experienced a a paradox. That is exactly what the harmony of opposites is. A paradox. Opposite energies dynamically and harmoniously moving together. Changing one drop at a time.
The first day of summer is the beginning of movement towards late summer and then autumn. Nature is inviting us to align with the full manifestation of active light yang energy while directly remembering in our bodies, minds and spirits (led by our intentions) that the process is in change. Can you cultivate the grounding, receptive nature of yin as an underlying slowly increasing program running concurrently during this active time?
Summer solstice is directly opposite and harmoniously counterbalanced with the winter solstice. We are already in the process of moving towards winter solstice. At winter solstice and just beyond, we will sit exactly opposite to where we are now. Another paradox.Both programs of yin and yang run simultaneously. At the same time. Constantly changing their counterbalancing amplitudes. Always in dynamic and harmonious tension.
Remember one drop at a time of change matters. Now. It will still matter six months from now. When our experience of our world will be different, yet fundamentally the same. Always in flux. Always changing. Always able to be noticed. One drop of change at a time.
Commit now to noticing just noticeable differences. Just after the full yang solstice and in preparation for the full yin solstice this winter.
Join Cathy Englehart, DC and I at our winter retreat in January 2016 where you can learn to actively hibernate while embracing the paradox of being and doing. You are on your way there now.