On Getting Old

We would like to stay young forever, but there is the inevitability of old age. We are scared to look old. We try to look young, but in spite of all technological advances – skin tightening, and dyeing the hair – and beauty parlors, old age creeps in. Even our attitude is flexible till our youth, and rigidity creeps in as we age. We are no longer in the main stream of social activity. We tend to live secluded life within our homes. We must live life proactively with enthusiasm, and be self-reliant: socially, financially, and emotionally.

Oh! the inevitability of old age!

Are you old in age?

  • Or, you have ‘an old person’s attitude’!

The universal symptom of old age

* As rigidity increases in a body, it indicates arrival of old age.

A sapling is flexible.

An old plant is not; it is rigid.

An old animal or a bird have a less flexible body.

An old person does not have a flexible body.

Old age attitude – the exclusive symptom for humanity

* Rigid views in old age

For humanity, ‘rigidity in views’ is more relevant!

An old person is normally rigid in his attitude.

He has fixed habits.

He refuses to change.

Over the years, his daily chores have been sculpted, and tailor-made to suit his likes and dislikes.

He finds himself uncomfortable, when he faces a change.

* Rigid views in young age

A young person, with rigid views, is no longer young in mind.

A rigid attitude implies a stagnant mind.

All militants have rigid and stagnant attitude.

They can never appreciate or tolerate a different way of life or ritual, not in conformity with their anachronistic views.

Yet, they are not incorrigible.

But who will come forward to discuss with them, or to educate them?

Old minds in young bodies are dangerous to humanity.

Busy doing unproductive activities

* An old person may not know,’how to spend his time’.

He keeps himself busy:

(a) A morning walk with friends, to neutralise loneliness throughout the day,

(b) Reading newspaper – each page, leisurely, even classifieds – a favourite pastime for 2-3 hours,

(c) Playing cards daily – 10-12 hours a day, and

(d) Participation in honorary jobs, and consultancy.

Be an asset to society

* An old person is a liability to society, when he draws pension or avails social welfare measures.

Japan faces the problem of abnormal increase in number of retired, old persons.

An old person must earn money, without bothering about others’ criticism.

Then he is an active member of society.

He is less of a liability, and is back as an asset to the society.

Participation in social activities

Old persons feel less lonely.

It gives them a purpose of life.

Be a part in a social welfare project.

Meet older, lonely souls in old age homes.

Meet lonely old age or young lonely patients in hospitals.

Even looking after orphan pets, or discarded pets, is a satisfying activity.

Living in old memories

* Don’t live in old memories.

The World is full of grandparents who keep repeating same interesting anecdotes of their younger days to their disinterested grandchildren.

Create new memories, by living an active life – new hobbies, and new friends.

Children and grandchildren can’t share their lives with old grandparents, as a friend.

There is a generation gap.

Old persons have to find their conversation group in their age group.

How to face the old age

* Create fresh memories in life, by active participation in life.

A 93 years old Sikh, Fauza Singh ran the London marathon 2004, in 6 hours and 7 minutes.

He did it – an incredible physical feat.

But more important, his robust mental health,

And his enthusiasm for living life fully!

* Have a project in your life.

A 90-year-old friend is writing a new book every year, explaining his religion to his community, in an easy to understand language.

His reward!

God has gifted him mental alertness, in old age.

* Enjoy being proactive in your habits.

If you are in seventies or eighties, but immobile or bed-ridden, move out in a wheel chair.

Enjoy the cool breeze, river banks, and scenic beauty of mountains.

Don’t stay secluded within the home.

Be thankful to God, for your good health, all these years.

Be thankful to God, for the old age.

Not everybody is granted old age experience by God.