"Elders are NOT 'senior citizens' who get gold watches at retirement, move to Sunbelt states, and play cards, shuffleboard, and bingo ad nauseum. They are not 'wrinkled babies, succumbing to a trivial, purposeless waste of their years and their time. Then what are elders? They are wisdomkeepers who have an ongoing responsibility for maintaining society's well-being and safeguarding the health of our ailing planet Earth. Using tools for inner growth, such as meditation, journal writing, and life review, elders come to terms with their mortality, harvest the wisdom of their years, and transmit a legacy to future generations. Serving as mentors, they pass on the distilled essence of their life experiences to others. The joy of passing on wisdom to younger people not only seeds the future, but crowns an elder's life with worth and nobility."
"Let's replace negative images of aging with a more joyous vision that I call SAGE-ING. People don't automatically become sages simply by living to a great age. They become wise by undertaking the inner work that leads in stages to expanded consciousness. Elders mine the riches of our spiritual traditions. With their panoramic perspective on time and history, elders can infuse the political and economic dialogue with the wisdom that comes from taking the long view on issues. Sages can help redirect us from selfish, short term thinking to broader, inspired approaches that take into account the welfare of our endangered planet."
Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi
"From Age-ing to Sage-ing"
Photos: Pasqueflowers, Ponderosa Pine bark and the Hewlett Burn, Poudre Canyon, CO, April 12, 2016. The fourth photo is of Reb Zalman
For Spiritual Direction or Workshops, please visit: http://www.resourcesforspiritualgrowth.com/
Stephen Hatch, M.A. is a spiritual teacher and photographer from Fort Collins, Colorado. His approach is contemplative, inter-spiritual, and Earth-based.