Food for Thought
All this is passing before our very eyes, but there are none so blind as those who will not see.
--- Mohandus K. Ghandi
A state of Consciousness which has not been experienced by a person, cannot be conceived or understood by him.
It is also an error to think that what we cannot imagine, is inconceivable and has no existence in fact.
--- Dr. Bhagat Singh Thind
The key to growth
is the introduction
of higher dimensions of consciousness
into our awareness.
--- Lao Tzu
● from the Latin conscius
or "to know"
● perceiving with a degree of controlled observation
● aware of, especially of something within one's self
● to become older
● to show the effects or characteristics of increasing age
THOUGHTS ON CONSCIOUS AGING
Robert C. Atchley, PhD. and noted Gerontologist
"The vision laid out by the early framers of the "aging with consciousness" movement involves developing and nurturing a contemplative life and engaging in service rooted in the higher levels of consciousness that a contemplative life makes available. Aging with consciousness is neither quick nor easy. It requires that we come back over and over again to our intention to be awake as we age. It requires that we practice compassionate listening and look at the world from a long-term vantage point that transcends our purely personal desires and fears."
Harry R. Moody, Director of Academic Affairs, AARP
""Conscious Aging" has emerged as a social ideal at a specific moment in history, in the first decade of the 21st century. This historical moment reflects the convergence of two historical trends: the evolution of psychology to include humanistic, transpersonal and lifespan development theory; and the widening impact of population aging in all post-industrial societies."
Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, PhD. Psychology of Religion
"The model of the spiritual elder is an appropriate one for individuals experiencing an extended lifespan. This process can be facilitated through the application of transpersonal and humanistic processes. A major part of this work involves an examination of one's life and an understanding of how apparently negative events often lead to positive outcomes. Inner work is also essential to relieve oneself of the burden of resentment and anger that can accumulate over a lifetime."
Every one of us is advancing through life on both a horizontal and a vertical plane.
We are advancing along a horizontal lifeline that averages around 77 years.
A lot of factors that help determine the length of our personal lifeline are beyond our control
- our sex, hereditary factors, accidental death,
etc. The main factor within our control is our individual lifestyle - our choices
as to what we eat, exercise, continuing education, mental attitude, choice of social and community networks, etc. For
the factors within our control, we can make good choices and live longer
(and happier) or poor choices and shorten our individual lifeline.
At the same time, we are also advancing vertically into higher and higher levels of awareness and
consciousness. Classically defined, there are 7 levels of awareness with
the lowest being our dream state and the highest being full
enlightenment. We can unknowingly plod through the lessons we need to
learn and perhaps we will slowly move from our current level of
awareness to the next level. Or, we can make a conscious effort to understand who we are, why
we are here and what it is all about.
We have no choice but to move along our horizontal lifeline and up our vertical awareness chain. The beautiful choice we
do have is how well we enjoy the physical journey and how consciously awake and aware we become during the process.