serene ambition™

transforming the culture of aging

Archive for September, 2006

Connection

Posted by Shae Hadden on 09/29/06

I’ve always been aware of the distances between people…ever since my first childhood remembrance of being a being separate from my mother. Vivid memories of being the last one chosen to be on the team in gym class translated into a story about being the one assigned to sit on the sidelines of life while others got to play. I thought I had left that all behind when I got married at the ripe old age of 28. I was ready to dive in and live full out. And I thought I did….Until recently.

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Choosing Age

Posted by Jim Selman on 09/28/06

I’ve asked a lot of people how old they would be if they really had a choice. In a recent essay entitled Complaint and the Blind Men, Laurence Platt, who writes from his experience of Werner Erhard’s work, wrote about the idea of choice as a creative act as opposed to a conclusion based on some analytical reasoning. The message is that happiness is the result of choosing ‘what is’, what some disciplines call ‘profound acceptance’ or ‘surrender’.

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Old isn’t Elder

Posted by Jim Selman on 09/27/06

The word “Elder” is becoming the vogue term for people over 60 or, in some cases, even younger. I think it is a mistake as well as inaccurate to make “Elder” synonymous with having reached a certain age. First of all, being an Elder is a role, not a fact of biology. Moreover, it is a role that exists in the context of community. The word itself distinguishes a relationship between the Elder and members of their community.

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Posted in Culture of Aging | 4 Comments »

Anti-Age Laws

Posted by Jim Selman on 09/26/06

The BBC recently ran a piece on new anti-age discrimination laws in the UK. Although anti-age discrimination laws aren’t new in the USA, the statistics show that, while age is on the same list with sexual preference, race, gender and the handicapped, the practices that limit opportunity for people as they age suggests the laws aren’t making much difference. In fact, since the 1960s, like many western countries, employment amongst the over 50s in the US has fallen, not risen. Another BBC report on anti-aging discrimination laws in the US noted that, as it’s becoming increasingly difficult to sustain a working life as you age, an increasing number of claims against employers on the grounds of age discrimination reveal a growing awareness of this issue.

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Elderhood

Posted by Jim Selman on 09/25/06

On Friday I had the pleasure of listening to a speaker in his late 60s articulate a compelling and challenging scenario for all of us to get very serious about our choices and our role in the world in coming years. David Korten, a fellow with an impressive pedigree of worldly accomplishments and currently board chair of YES! Magazine, wove a number of familiar themes of coming disaster—peak oil, climate change, economic collapse—in a way that, although not doomsday, offered his vision for a human-centered, community-based and life-sustaining society. His metaphor of civilization transforming, like a caterpillar, from an ‘out-of-control’ voracious consumption machine into a beautiful, free and life-affirming ‘butterfly’ offers a hopeful image for what is otherwise likely to be a very rough ride for the foreseeable future.

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Beginning

Posted by Jim Selman on 09/22/06

I guess everything starts somewhere. This is my first ‘blog’. I’m still getting used to the local jargon in these here parts. I see the ‘blogosphere’ as the perfect place to share my ideas about age and aging.

Actually, this isn’t the beginning of my interest in and commitment to do something about the culture of aging that we all share. It has been a kind of hobby of mine for a long time. And now, as I approach 65, it has become more of a mission.

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Posted in Culture of Aging | 3 Comments »

Serenity

Posted by Shae Hadden on 09/22/06

I was struck by the overwhelming sense I had that this woman was no longer waiting for something…or someone…to come along. That she was at peace just being here…on the stairs somewhere between here and there, yesterday and tomorrow. Just present here and now.

At the starting point to serenity.

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