CHAPTER II: Life and Death PDF Print E-mail

AGE AND TIME


Relativity

‘ Everything is relative, this is the only absolute thing.’
Auguste Comte, philosopher

As for many things in life, age is relative. It depends on the perspective from which we look at things. It depends on how we live our life, and how we perceive life and its meaning. It depends on the beliefs we have. It depends on what we make of it all. I have met many ‘young people’ who thought and lived like very fearful and conservative ‘old people’, afraid of engaging in the exciting adventure that is life. I have also met many ‘old people’ who have kept their inner child alive and who are full of joy, curiosity, spontaneity and mischievousness. I have met or know about many wise and inspiring ‘young people’, and there are lots of them everywhere in the world! I have also met or know about very rigid and ignorant ‘old people’. Age is irrelevant regarding how we choose to live and what we create for ourselves, others and the planet.

From the perspective of this life, I could tell you I am in my forties.
From the perspective of living life believing that ‘today is a new day’, full of potentials, new beginnings, experiences and learning, I could tell you I am one day old.
From the perspective of my spiritual essence, I could tell you i am eternal.

At times,
I am a joyful and ingenuous,
a spontaneous, wild and free child.

At times,
I am a loving, compassionate
and caring mother, a nourisher
and a fearless protectress.

At times,
I am a wise and sharp,
strong and powerful old crone.

What about you?


The Beauty of Aging

‘ For each age is a dream that is dying,
Or one that is coming to birth.’

Arthur O’ Shaughnessy, poet

The inevitable, natural aging process of the body has consequences on our physical existence. When my ninety-year-old maternal grandmother complains about her health problems to her doctor, he sometimes tells her: ‘That is the inconvenience of being alive!’.
I really believe that laughter and humor can help us live better and even play an important part in overcoming difficult times.

‘ Age is something that does not matter unless you are a cheese.’
Billie Burke, author

Depending on how we live our life and what we made or make of it, aging can also have many advantages. We have accumulated more experience in life. We might have learnt many things and lessons that have helped us give meaning to life, which helped us grow and evolve positively. We might have developed many potentials, skills and gifts. We might have gained knowledge – connaissance – and wisdom. We might have found more balance, harmony and peace within ourselves and in relationships with others. We might have learnt to accept and love ourselves and others better. We might have learnt to have compassion for and forgive ourselves and others. By facing and dealing with challenges and hardships, we might have discovered resources we didn’t know we had. We might have addressed problems and weaknesses in ourselves and became stronger because of them. We might know who we are in our wholeness, we might have explored and used many of the incredible potentials we have. We might be able to put into perspective and to prioritize the things of greater importance. We might have awakened and learnt to apprehend and engage with life from higher perceptual states. We might be able to live life with the love and compassion, wisdom and awareness of Spirit. We might have realized many meaningful things for ourselves, for others and for the world around us.

Or we might just have grown grumpy and negative!

‘ The point of life is not to succeed. The point of life is to die trying.’
Edna St Vincent Millay, poet

 

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