THE ART OF AGING – Part X: Our First and Lasting Cry

I once asked the university students taking a seminar I was teaching what the first utterance is that we make as humans. They gave typical responses such as Da-da, Ma-ma, goo-goo, gah-gah, and so on. It surprised them when I suggested that our first utterance is, I WANT—I want food, love, warmth, and protection—and that we continue to utter, I WANT— I want more food, MORE love, MORE warmth, and MORE protection.

To where does our wanting lead? Happiness? Satisfaction? Exploration? Ingenuity? Greed?

Today, history was made as the result of our wanting—NASA’s Ingenuity Mars Helicopter is the first aircraft to make a controlled flight on another planet. Source Also today, Canadians will throw away more food than they consume.

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THE ART OF AGING – Part IX: Sometimes I Feel Sorry for God

Norwegian Sculptor Gustav Vigeland, Vigeland Park, Oslo, Norway

The Covid-19 pandemic is exposing our beliefs, wants, demands, and intolerances. One year in, and it becomes clear what we truly do value, what we focus on. For some, social contact appears to be the ultimate of their survival, as expressed via zealous social media posts and banned group gatherings.

This brings our attention to religious leaders such as Pastor Coates of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and to his congregants and their ilk. I hesitate to include Coates as part of this discussion, should it fan his notoriety which, I speculate, he is enjoying at the moment. However, his story is trending, so worthy of a poke or two. . .

. . . One poke being that which jars me to say that I sometimes feel sorry for God! Religious beliefs have caused uprisings for as long as humankind has existed. It directs our behaviours, both moral and not, both personal and communal. It starts wars, and it heals. Our various approaches to religion and its multifaceted nature is why I think God’s head is shaking when looking at the marvel of creation and how we continue to destroy it.

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THE ART OF AGING – Part III: Change

CHANGE… one word that pretty much describes aging—physical change, mental change, emotional change, location change, career change, spiritual change, relationship change… Even our goals change as we journey through the later years of our lives.

Aging often entails the need to make changes, and that the types of changes older people must consider are particularly pressing.i

Some of us handle change well, and some of us don’t. Why is that? Can managing change in a wholesome manner be learned? Can change be avoided?

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THE ART OF AGING – Part V: Friends

A Friend In Need
Cassius Marcellus Coolidge 1903

Friends come, they go, and they stay. There are instant friends—you know, the ones you click with on first meeting. There are passing friends—the ones you connect with on an overseas trip or special work project, and even though you stay in touch via technology, the friendship link soon dissipates. Maintaining long-distance friendships is difficult at the best of times. One also can’t ignore that with aging comes changes in our friendships.

And, there are the friends that some people have that become part of their forever life.Read More »