Why the word "shift" is so important

If you excavate language, you can consciously discover obscured layers of meaning. I have lately become very sensitive to the word shift - I find it everywhere. Shift is a sign that repeats along my path, a breadcrumb trail by which I make my way along the Shifting Path.

Once I started to notice the context of where this word can be found, and the myriad ways it can be used, I began to consciously dissect it.

The shifting of shift

One of the first things I noticed is shift's enormous flexibility and adaptability - the use, the meaning, and the context of the word itself shifts like few others.

As I continue to peel back the linguistic layers of the word shift, here are some examples of the layers of meaning I have found so far:

To Shift you are not required to Change much.

A shift implies that all the content or necessary components are already present, that what is required is a movement that does not gain or lose anything internally - the context changes, our perspective changes, the environment around a Thing changes; or the level at which we experience the Thing which has shifted has changed.

The nuances of meaning are powerful.

A Shift is about the relationships between things:

  • proximity
  • intensity
  • connection
  • distance…

When we shift something, it is also implied that the change we make is small. It implies that we are already close.

Paradigm Shift

You may have heard the term paradigm shift - this is related to ascension and transcendence. We've taken an Idea as far as it will go at its current level; to take it further we don't start from scratch -- we don't go back to square one -- we go to the next square.

Shifts are about increments.

The series of small, manageable changes by which greater changes are reached.