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Everything undergoes Change

Because of the passage of time everything undergoes change. Food which is freshly cooked today is tasty and delicious. While it is fresh, its potentiality for giving strength and health are very good. But the very same articles of food become toxic after a lapse of two days. Whatever food you consider to be good, to be useful, to be healthy and beneficial, will after a period of time change into something bad, something useless, something unhealthy and harmful. These changes are unavoidable.

In the context of change, you can also see the four types of devotees: the one who is afflicted and seeks relief from pain and suffering, the one who seeks material boons and prosperity, the one who seeks spiritual knowledge, and the wise one. Over a period of time the very same person is likely to progress through all these stages.

We can also consider the changes that occur in the course of a lifetime. Immediately after birth the new-born is called a baby; after a few years it is described as a child; twenty years later the same person is considered an adult; and after another 30 years it will have become a grandparent. These are not four different people. It is the same person all the time, but because of the passage of time different names are given, in accordance with the different stages of life that the individual is passing through.

A human being's life, which is most difficult to obtain, undergoes many changes as time goes by. When this is true for human beings, then how much more must it be true for all the other beings and objects of the world? If you ask what is the greatest defect in a human being, you will find that it is the changes which occur in one's physical being. Whether good or bad, these changes cannot be avoided. As changes are inherent in everything in the phenomenal world, you should not develop any attachment or any sense of my-ness for anything or anyone.

Who is the father? Who is the mother? Who are the children? Who are the family members? Who are the friends? These are all changing forms. You cannot answer these questions for all time. As you become aware of all these changes that are constantly occurring in all these relationships, then how can you develop any attachment to them? The Gita has taught that one has to recognize all the changes that come about with time as fundamental defects and flaws. Therefore, develop complete detachment from the defective forms which are experiencing these changes. They have no permanence.