The perception of change in people is very interesting. When someone says they have changed, the implication is that whatever they think they used to be, they no longer are. This may be caused by a personal trauma, or any number of life-altering experiences. It may certainly be true that their perspectives have been permanently altered as the result of these external events. But the idea that they have somehow eliminated, disposed of, or otherwise altered their being such that they are no longer the same entity may be a bit inexact.

Here is an analogy that illustrates the concept of a person changing in a way that outwardly reflects a different personality, or way of presenting oneself. That is the example of a precious stone with countless facets. We can consider ourselves to be like that stone. Each facet is an aspect of us that can be outwardly visible to the rest of the world. Some facets are more visible than others. This may be caused by the surface measurement of a particular facet, or some facets being more highly shined than others may cause it. The big surfaces and the extra shiny surfaces are going to be far more noticeable than all the others. The physical, mental, and psychological makeup of our being represents the sum of what others and we think we are. These are our visible, most noticeable facets. People, who think they know us, have become comfortable with and familiar with what they are accustomed to “seeing”. Think of each facet as a trait of our nature and being.

If we allow those familiar facets to lose their high sheen, and begin polishing other aspects of ourselves to a still higher sheen, it could create the impression that we have “changed”. In fact, we may not even be recognizable to those who think they know who we are. They may even inform us in unpleasant terms that they do not enjoy or appreciate the new person we have become. They were most comfortable with the person we were. So, this new facet, or group of facets does not feel right to them. They wish we would go back to being what we used to be.

Usually, we cannot go back to that version of ourselves. In fact, we really haven’t changed in a true sense. That old version of us is still an important part of us. We still have to recognize that we have within us the ability to display attitudes, actions, and make mistakes that have previously played a role in defining who we are. We can all too easily fall into an old pattern without even being conscious of it, especially when in the presence of someone who is familiar with that version of us. That can serve as a valuable reminder that we will always be the sum total of our past experiences. But, for whatever valid reason, we need to shine other facets of our being to experience what that will bring to us. It is a necessary growth process that we all must go through, lest we die. And if we die, we still have to go through the process of discovering new facets of ourselves in order to discover the completeness that we already are.

I believe it is much healthier for me to accept that I have not changed, and will not actually change in a truly inner respect. I will continuously, eternally discover new aspects of myself, and will let these new facets shine brighter than the others until it is time to renew the process, in order to discover still more of the total me. By observing myself in this process, one may very well decide that I have changed in some elemental way. While I can allow that outward perception, I know through my inner awareness that I am still the person I always have been, and the never-ending process of discovery is functioning in harmony with the master plan for my life.

In summation, all of us are everything and everyone. We all have that in common as conscious beings. What we choose to express visually and publicly is but a single facet of our totality. Both science and spirituality inform us that all is one and one is all, paraphrasing countless sources. Hence, we share an infinite number of traits we can metaphorically refer to as facets of our being.

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Kent Comfort

Kent Comfort is a writer, entrepreneur and podcaster. He enjoys life in the southwest with his wife and their cocker spaniel.