David and Hi-Jin Kang Hodge are internationally recognized artists, designers, and filmmakers. They were asked to contribute to an exhibit called "The Missing Peace: Artists Consider the Dalai Lama." They chose to focus on the Buddhist theme of impermanence. The couple interviewed 108 individuals from all walks of life from doctors, gardeners, economists, to spiritual leaders about this subject. Then they assembled a large circular arrangement of mounted iPods on which the interviews played simultaneously, each on its own screen. This book contains the interviews along with topical pieces (impermanence, awareness, permanence, peace, last day, perish and flourish, message to the world, and presence) along with a DVD of the original exhibit. As Tenzin Tethong, President of the Dalai Lama Foundation, notes:
"Impermanence reminds us that everything we experience we experience is subject to change, both positive and negative, and that this realization can temper our emotions and help us find greater stability and peace within ourselves."
Here are some of the themes which emerge out of this multidimensional consideration of impermanence:
• We are all just passing through so there is no need to cling to anything.
• Resistance to the omnipresence of change brings unhappiness.
• Impermanence enables us to savor the present moment.
• Appreciating the fragility of life can make us more compassionate.
• Accepting change, we can give up trying to control things.
• Nothing lasts and all things run down eventually, including the body.
• Disappointments are easier to take when seen under the banner of impermanence.
• Believing in change enables us to work for peace and justice and to live in hope.