Last fall, the Metropolitan opera staged its Italian classic “Tosca” with a totally new set and new costumes — a new concept. This was after decades of using the tried and true ‘Zefferelli’ design. How was it received? On opening night, the audience booed the production. Critics were . . . well, critical. My father, a lifelong opera fan, asked with a sigh, “Why did they have to go and mess with perfection?”
“It’s change, dad,” I said. “Change is good.” Or is it? I often like to preach to those who will listen that change is good. Change is progress. If we didn’t have change we would just stagnate in a pool of plodding identical days. But is change actually good . . . does it necessarily lead to better?
I think of the story about the farmer (and I paraphrase liberally here) where he inherits a horse and his neighbors said ‘good’. But the horse kicks his son, breaking his arm and the neighbors said ‘bad’. But because the son was infirm he was passed over as an army recruit and the neighbors said ‘good.’ And so on and so on and so on.
Really, we can never know what is for the best or how a change will play out in our lives. And so, upon deeper reflection, I have revised my soap box spiel to reflect that change simply IS. Change is change. It happens. It’s inevitable. It just exists, neutrally and naturally. I’ve found that when I gracefully accept change as the way of things, life is good.
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