Tag Archives: perspective

Inside the Rainbow

By Jim Selman | Bio

If we think about retirement or growing older in general, it seems to me that most of us are trying to figure out what we want for our future. Our orientation is to explore options given whatever opening we have, rather than to consider that aging is an opening and the challenge is to create new possibilities—not simply cope with our circumstances.

I used to think about life-after-retirement as a kind of blank canvas on which we could paint whatever future we choose. 

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Alcoholism and the Canary

In the late 80s, Anne Wilson Schaef and Diane Fassel wrote a book called The Addictive Organization. While I have a very different experience and theory than what they were proposing, I think their metaphor was perfect. For me, the idea that an organization or society can become ‘addicted’ is not a metaphor. I believe, like Charles Horton Cooley, that “Individuals and organizations

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Saving the Best for Last

By Don Arnoudse | Bio

In his wonderful book From Age-ing to Sage-ing, Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi notes that the Bible is lavish in its praise of elders. ”It considers gray hair a crown of glory and wrinkles a mark of distinction.” This really got me thinking. What if we regarded the last part of our life—let’s just say the years after our hair goes gray—to be the “crowning glory of our years”? Wow! What would be possible from that perspective?

On my 50th birthday, I
received cards, intended to be funny, about how I was now a member of
the “over the hill gang”. At 50! This year I will be 60. What if I
picture myself at the top of the hill—with the full intention of
staying up there for a good long time? What would be possible?

If our gray-haired years were truly our “crowning glory”, we would:

  • Be thrilled at finally being old
  • Continue to be curious (but with great calm)
  • Be free from striving and trying to prove ourselves
  • Take the time for deep reflection and contemplation
  • Be busy distilling wisdom from a lifetime of experience
  • Generously offer our legacy to younger generations
  • Be grateful for this stage of life
  • Make our peace with our mortality
  • Be quick to forgive and slow to blame
  • Often take the perspective of the “greater good”
  • Value a good dialogue without concern for who’s right
  • Leave the world a better place than we found it

mind is brimming with possibilities. The crowning glory of my years.
Not the fading remembrance of

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Intergenerational Dialogues

I always know my ideas are good when everyone else seems to be having the same ones. A few months ago, we were engaged in discussions about what Eldering is and had what seemed like a breakthrough at the time in seeing eldering as the process of “intergenerational collaboration through which we can create a common future”. Since then I have discovered that this is not only not a new idea, but one that is taking off like wildfire. This intergenerational

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Father and Son

I was speaking about the future with my son recently over an obscenely large steak at an Argentinian restaurant in Mexico City. We’d just seen a real ‘shoot ’em up’ film which just happened to be called Shoot ’em Up. The hero, a kind of homeless James Bond, lives on the street, reminiscent of Lee Child’s character Jack Reach. They are both tougher than tough guys, the kind of character who make the bad guys feel bad that they ever met. Last night’s film was about 500 guys

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A Happy Thanksgiving Day tribute to all our elder friends in Canada!  

Thanks for the Elders
You have made my life richer.
And you have made me see the world anew
By bringing your perspective to my life.
Grateful am I for every moment of your time,
Every sharing of your wisdom and experience,
Each intention clarified and held,
But more than these…I am honoured to ‘listen’
To who you are and what you stand for.

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I am officially on holiday. Darlene and I are in Granada seeing what is perhaps one of the two or three top tourist destinations in Europe—The Alhambra. Aside from this site being a unique and spectacular complex of ancient fortifications and Arabic palaces, it also tells the story of how temporal our lives and our civilizations really are. This one had a pretty good run (about 800 years) before it was conquered in 1492, the same year Columbus set foot in the ‘New World’.

Our visit has

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Giving Your Best

By Shae Hadden

As the evenings get cooler and days shorter here, summer holidays wind down. Everyone seems to be preparing for the start of September, and looking forward to the last real weekend before things start up again. Most everyone I talk with has enjoyed some of the summer outside with family and friends, and I find myself experiencing a twinge of regret. For me, the last few months have been a blur of work indoors in front of the computer, interspersed with a few brief moments of relaxation. This afternoon, I am acknowledging that I have ‘missed’ this summer altogether in my efforts to fulfill as many of my commitments as possible.

am reminded, once again, that we cannot ‘give our best’ day in and day
out unless we also give to ourselves. And sometimes the best we gift we
can offer ourselves is a new perspective on time. For the point of view
I have held until now (that time is a precious resource that I don’t
have enough of), has left me drained and unsatisfied. I wonder what
happened to unprogrammed time to relax and smell the roses, to be in
the company

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Discernment: Harold’s Story II

By Stu Whitley

This is the second in a three-part series.

Einstein is supposed to have said that the most important decision we ever make is whether the world is a good place or a bad place. I don’t believe that we consciously make that decision – we are taught to believe it, one way or the other, and the most difficult lesson of all to unlearn is that we live in a hostile universe. There are just too many confirmatory events that tend to erode our courage to think differently.

strategies in intellectual discourse talk about how we ‘tell the truth’
about others and ourselves. Post-modern social theory considers that
this is the changing terrain of politics, literature and other
intellectual work that addresses the way in which power is exercised
and made visible. It is to conform to a ‘habit of truth’, which means
information-seeking and the vigorous constructive

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Relationships…with a Difference

This post was contributed by Shae Hadden.

I find myself wondering why we let a difference in our ages limit how we relate to each other in our personal relationships. I’m not speaking of the obvious social taboos like pedophilia and infantophilia. It’s the relationships between consenting adults that have me pondering. Why are different arrangements acceptable in different cultures and societies? Why is what is considered perverse in one accepted in another? Why is the most common pattern of heterosexual relationships still a slightly older man with a younger woman? Why is it that age disparity is less of an issue the older the partners involved are?

Psychologists have developed a host of terms to describe age-disparate relationships such as gerontophilia (attraction of non-elderly people to the elderly), teleiophilia (attraction of young people to the elderly) and the more general chronophilia (for any age-related preference). These terms make intergenerational relationships sound like a disease. They even assign ‘causes’ in the form of reasons for the attraction—usually from financial and social

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