Is Transformation Possible?
Transformation is typically defined as making a thorough or dramatic change in form, appearance, or character. In trying to increase the survival rate of Monarch butterflies, I created a safe and nurturing environment for some caterpillars I found in my garden. I subsequently witnessed the magical transformation of a caterpillar to a chrysalis to the literal unfolding of the glorious wings of an adult Monarch butterfly. What a transformation I witnessed in just two weeks!
Can humans experience such dramatic transformations as well? I have looked at pictures of myself as a newborn. Within that small creature that I cannot even recognize as me resides my future adult self.
Well, you might argue, our physical transformation from child to adult occurs routinely, if provided with a safe and nurturing environment. Can someone make a thorough or dramatic change in form, appearance, or character after adulthood is reached?
When I was twenty, I kept a personal journal. Looking at those pages now, almost forty years later, I know that I wrote them. However, I cannot recognize my own handwriting, because it has changed so much since then. When I look at photos of my twenty-year-old self, I can sort of imagine how that person became who I am today, but the process is still mysterious and miraculous.
In the midst of our suffering, it is easy to lose sight of the many thorough or dramatic changes in form, appearance, or character that we have already experienced in ourselves and witnessed in others.
Is Transformation Possible? Perhaps a more helpful question to ask is: How can I create a safe and nurturing environment for my next transformation to emerge?
Ron Weill, MA, LP