Turning Points

With the plethora of political turmoil around the world, one can’t help but feel a certain thrill. The world is alive when freedoms are being fought for when there are protests for human rights, when there are demands for democracy, as there are in Hong Kong, and free literature conferences that take strides toward free speech, as there recently were in Burma. And I feel a part of these things, I walked the streets in Hong Kong where these protests are happening and the strain on faces standing their ground aren’t all unfamiliar. The beautiful Burmese handwriting and smile of Aung San Suu Kyi brings back memories of warm days seeing the lovely Burmese script through Yangon and near Suu Kyi’s very home. But it’s more than these physical connections that make me feel akin to this pulse of change across the globe.

These moments, these events are turning points. A fair analogy, for anyone who’s taken chemistry (even if you’re not a chemist, bear with me, I have a point) would be an endothermic chemical reaction. This process starts off slowly and takes time to overcome the activation energy, but once the activation energy is reached, we get to a tipping point, then the chemical reaction begins and chemical change happens, molecules are manipulated and new products are formed. It’s at this point that you can’t take away the heat, or stop the reaction, because it’s already been set in place.

These tipping points happen on the atomic level, with chemical reactions, on the macro-level with countries and political structures and in our own lives.

We are creatures of constant change, and our journeys aren’t swift processes. They take time and there are often catalysts, agents of change that bring us to pivotal points in our lives. These turning points can be anything from re-evaluating dreams, changing relationships, seeing new goals, finding your place in the world or losing the place you thought you had. They can be a new friend, new job or an old dream. These moments must be embraced, seen for all they are worth and allowed to occur.

These turning points are the same moments that can spark revolutions for an entire country. Imagine what these moments can do in your own life.


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