Everything will grow. All life passes through stages of growth. In each stage there is gain and loss. As is seen in much of the world, these gains and losses inherently balance each other out.
Growth is not necessarily on the inside only. Although our awareness is the staple of our conscious growth, gain and loss of all things is also an integral part of the processes outside of us. We can not help but be. We can not help but to be a part of all that is, all that is everywhere. Therefore the changes surrounding us affect us just as much as those that occur internally. This is comparable to the changing of the seasons.
A tree will change the color of its leaves and the leaves will fall. They will no longer be a physical part of the tree as they once were. However, leaves are regenerated after the winter season. In winter, the tree's metamorphosis to a state of less matter is just a phase. Although the tree loses its leaves, it is still ever-aging, ever-growing, just as humans and the rest of the animal world is ever-growing and ever-aging, following an internal or external change. In fact, this loss is growth within itself. With each addition of age, we continue to be, continue to expand and we slowly step of paths that seem clear-cut and assimilate into the folds of one.
When the tree's leaves fall, they are still of the tree and will forever be of the Earth. We as humans, whatever we may lose on both a physical or contemplative level will not constitute us as any different than what we were previously, but will present to us a different position in this phase of life.
Our Spring will regenerate our losses, not necessarily in any form, in any substance, but it is inevitable that our growth will bring with it new and expansive shifts in our lives. These are different for everyone but serve the same purpose, and that is growth.
Therefore, within our growth, there are numerous, possibly infinite cycles that churn our progress, just as the tree and it's phases are a product of Earthly cycles that have been in play for millenia. We are not so different from the nature from which we are constructed.
Growth is perpetual. But what makes it so? What makes it so that the cycle of the seasons spins onward? And ultimately, what is it that brings these cycles to their ends, brings life to its death, allows life to experience what can only be experienced in death?
I believe that the backbone to the entire living organisms of our Earth, the spine that propels the giant animals that is our world, is time. I don't believe that time is an illusion created by man, as many think. The only thing man-made in this case is the illusion that time exerts ultimate control over his being, when time is actually not in command, but the means through which growth and progress can take place. Every cycle, the rising and setting of the sun, our respiratory systems, the seasons...etc... is an entity within a pocket of the fatherly time figure (haha father time).
Every motion is a motion through time. By moving from one spot to another, you have effectively moved through an interval of time. Thus, distance (especially our perception of distance) is the measurement of an interval of time, and not the physical length by which we currently judge it.
I assert this because if we lived without time, we would have no reason to even see distance because we could be in different places at once, without the act of getting there. Without time, cycles would not run from start to finish to start to finish and so on, because the start and the finish would be one and the same, with no experience in between.
On this point, I would like to say, as a friend of mine mentioned, that the things we see in the natural world as opposite ends of a spectrum are, in essence the same, primarily because they are both echoes of their one source. e.g. the rising and setting of the sun (you're a genius Ben). When one of these opposites disappears, the inherent source remains.
However, because of time, there is an interval between these poles that all living, growing things must traverse through, and this is called experience. Experience is the foundation of existence and the growth of our minds is the result of experience.
Therefore, time's grasp and consistently perpetual flow is the reason we can experience just as experience is the reason we are.
Thus time is the most benign, most giving, most natural being. It is easy for one to forget this, however.
I find that people see time as a menace, a controlling entity that serves only to restrain. This is not true, and of course, is not healthy.
Those who constantly feel tainted by time do so because they don't allow themselves to relish their experience, but instead focus on a point at which they feel they will be able to conquer time. They see time as maniacal because they turn themselves into slaves whose desire is to foil time, when in reality, there is no need to do such because time's only desire is to help us grow, and most importantly, to experience.
All in all, time is the spine of growth. Growth is the brain, in which all processes, all cycles are. With experience, the brain expands; more growth happens. When barred from experience, the brain is frustrated; growth is stunted. Growth can't function without time, just as the brain can not be sustained without its spine.