Impermanence is a tricky subject. In today’s world the concept of impermanence applies more so to objects and items, rather than to life.
In Buddhist thought, impermanence holds that nothing will every be the same. Events change, people come and go, and life can change. Impermanence helps to provide the foundation for the first Noble Truth (more on that later). How does one begin to wrap their head around the fact that nothing states the same? It isn’t easy, nor should it be. Through study, one is able take hold of the difficult, complex topic and make it understandable.
Case in point: when the next Iphone or Galaxy is released, hundreds of thousands of people will buy this version simply because it is new. The current phone, though still functional, will either be traded in, sold, or discarded for something that is new, shiny, and a “must have.”
By using the phone as a metaphor, life is in a constant state of change. Just as cells are always regenerating, each moment will never be able to happen exactly as it was before. In our lives there are moments we are thankful for that we will not repeat. Thankfully, due to the concept of impermanence, we will not have too. For the moments that we wish we could recreate at any moment: we are out of luck. We may try to recreate them at a later time, yet something will be different: weather, time of day, age of people, the list goes on. For the moments that we wish we can hold onto: they will live on in our hearts.
Impermanence also allows for the difficult times when one does not feel that they can begin again to understand that it will pass. Events change. We change. We are given a new opportunity each and every moment. Thanks to the concept of impermanence, we can begin a new, at any time.