I’ve heard it said that death is the great equalizer. As true as this statement is, I see that aging too is the great equalizer. Stuff happens as we age, and no matter how much power, money, beauty, or sex-appeal you have, you can’t say no to what Mother Nature has to offer.
One of the intentions of these articles, “Aging – Who Me?”is to cultivate not only awareness but also our innate intelligence in a way that sparks a curiosity about what it is like within these human packages. Another intention is to see that, regardless of your chronological age, you are most likely always in the question – Aging – Who Me?
Can you remember the first time that you thought about death? (I was Five.) Can you remember the first sign of aging that you noticed on or in your body? (I was 35.) I suspect that from that moment on, you become vigilant, if not hyper vigilant to any and all follow up indications that aging was happening to you.
Sex appeal, money, and power can only go so far. DENIAL can only work for so long. Substances such as alcohol, anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications, facelifts, and the rest, only allows us to avoid and numb the human experience within the aging process that is occurring to us. At some point, relentless vanity must succumb to reality. Humiliation dies a hard death, out of which sweet humility is born. Such is the gift from Mother Nature.
I love it when talking with people in their 60’s, 70’s, 80’s or 90’s, they express that they don’t feel old inside – they feel like they are in their 30’s or younger. They still feel like a kid, and desire and enjoy all the pleasures that were part of their younger lives – that never goes away.
So, at some point we can distinguish ourselves from the sack of bones that for decades we believed was us. And, we come to discover that we aren’t aging, it is our bodies that are aging. We get wise, enough to be able to handle the truth of this fact, and willingly detach our identity from our bodies. We wise up and realize there is no point in fighting Mother Nature. This doesn’t mean we get depressed and crawl into our graves before our times. No. No. No. It actually means just the opposite!
There are many points in life where we choose to detach ourselves from who we thought we were, who we wished we were, and who we pretended to be. We came to surrender and accept that this Life-Journey provides many opportunities to question the purpose of being on this planet. All of the physical signs of aging – a big package of humility-building opportunities, wrapped in a big bow, is a gift from Mother Nature for those who dare to ask again and again and again – who am I, what’s the point of my presence on this planet, and, how will I know when I’m done?
Each of us has our own unique answers to these questions. I’ve discovered that for many, including myself, people who willingly sit with themselves and with these questions, most likely discover a lightness of being within. They smile more, even laugh, though the circumstances of aging will inevitably put them in their graves. They come to know themselves as the ageless one within. They come to accept that they are not their circumstances – they aren’t even their wrinkly old bodies. They stop taking the whole life-thing so seriously, and come to enjoy simpler pleasures of just being.
Regardless of our age, each of us face a plethora of choice-points that challenges our sense of Self. Though grueling and difficult, each life choice prepared us and has led us to this moment of truth, this moment of courage in facing the inevitability that, we won’t make it out of this alive. Now what? You have to see the humor in that! Or, maybe not yet!!
Just for grins, here is a video of singer Stan Boreson, singing “You Just Don’t Look Good Naked Anymore.”https://youtu.be/3_6I50oXAVM