Who Said “the Only Thing Constant Is Change”?

The Greek philosopher Heraclitus is credited with the proverb “change is the only constant in life,” which has also been translated as “the only constant is change.” Heraclitus is thought to have written the book where this proverb was located, but it was lost and only remains in pieces.

This passage by Heraclitus was discovered in one of the more than 100 literary fragments that are thought to have formed a part of his book. He was a theorist who developed beliefs about how life is in perpetual flux and change. Around 500 B.C., he lived in Ephesus, a city in modern-day Turkey not far from Kusadasi.

Misha Khatri
Misha Khatri is an emeritus professor in the University of Notre Dame's Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He graduated from Northern Illinois University with a BSc in Chemistry and Mathematics and a PhD in Physical Analytical Chemistry from the University of Utah.


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