Transformation is no accident; it is necessary to maintain progress in this life. Abdu’l-Baha makes this clear: “All things are subject to transformation and change, save only the essence of existence itself – since it is constant and immutable.”
As opposites clash in our lives, these times of overcoming adversity facilitate spiritual growth and transformation. Psychologist C.G. Jung says that opposition is inherent in human nature: “Nothing so promotes the growth of consciousness as this inner confrontation of opposites.” Consciousness and confrontation of opposites are linked in one of life’s primary purposes: “Only here, in life on earth, where opposites clash together, can the general level of consciousness be raised.” It is precisely the tension of opposites, which seek unity in their merging, that brings about the all-important expansion of consciousness.
This principle of colliding opposites, creating opportunities for transformation and greater growth, should be seen as a spiritual principle that applies equally to all human beings, just as the biological principle of homeorhesis does. The first principle is a blueprint for our spiritual development while the second is a blueprint for our biological development.
Identifying this pattern of transformation (essentially: thesis, antithesis, synthesis; or, beginning, muddle, resolution) in our own lives and incorporating its structure, significance, and meaning into the stories we tell about our lives is an important task for our time. This three-part process of transformation, a juxtaposition of dualities driving and directing our growth, leads to a new and greater form of unity and integration in our lives – and in the world. This is a journey that leads ultimately to both personal and collective transformation at the same time.
Now, more than ever, when the well being of the whole is so tied to the well being of the parts, when the parts are indistinguishable, even inseparable, from the whole, each influencing the other, the personal is the collective. What benefits one benefits us all ~ and, what harms one harms all.