aging as spiritual practice

John Robinson's picture

Average: 4.7 (3 votes)

I have come to believe - and experience - that aging is itself a spiritual practice. You progressively surrender so many ego beliefs and attachments (identity, roles, personal story, future) and this emptying of consciousness reveals the pure awareness that was alway present. I believe we have glimpses of non-dual consciousness all the time but ever more frequently as we age, if we simply pay attention. Aging seems to me to be a new developmental stage of spiritual growth, with new tasks, gifts and possibilities that transform us into elders and may help us change the destructive thought-world of humankind. Let me know if you are experiencing aging as enlightenment and how your world changes in this new awareness. Also please check out my work at
Many thanks, John

robert's picture

Thanks John for this lovely

Thanks John for this lovely and important post.

Watching others as well as myself, I have seen that aging can indeed become a spiritual practice (or to put it more precisely, can be used as a spiritual tool for spiritual advancement) or it can be a terrible spiritual hindrance.

The terrible byproducts of aging - body problems, pains, inabilities, personal dreams that become unfulfilled, and all other aspects of the body and mind - if they are regarded in acceptance then they enable one to transcend the body, but if perceived as a disappointment, resentment, anger about existence and are fought vigorously, in most cases lead to the abandonment of the spiritual path.

Also, the reliance on doctrines of reincarnation in order to cope with aging, is a terrible hindrance many are trapped in. You can believe or even be convinced that this life is just a phase in an incarnated chain BUT make sure this belief of you has nothing to do with your difficulties with aging, otherwise you are simply exploiting spirituality in order to escape from pains of reality and by doing so you turn your spirituality into a false means.

robert | Mon, 08/06/2012 - 09:36