Conscious eldering sees great value in examinig the past. It holds that true wisdom is the result of experience consciously reflected upon and that the past can be healed so that we can age with clear, strong energy and an idealism informed by experience. Rather than being symbols of how life has beaten us down, the scars we carry can be testaments to how we are like the tree that, even with its scars, covers itself with new growth every year. Two powerful forces operate in each of our lives to shape who we become as we age. One of these is the past. With conscious effort, we have the ability to heal and learn from our past so that it becomes a source of strength and wisdom i our elder years. The other force is that deep calling- the sense of how we can come most alive through sharing our gifts- that is encoded in our souls and works to lead us toward its fulfillment. An important aspect of conscious eldering is our intention and work to gain ever-clearer access to this calling……..Ron Pevny
called to scrutiny at certain times in our lives, we lean into our old toolbox for answers……maybe we need to leave it aside, be with the raw and broken places without rushing to heal…..being with has its own time….
If we are to understand the paradox of contemplation-and-action, we must attend to what Thomas Merton called “the hidden wholeness” that lies beneath the broken surface of our lives. Until we know the hidden wholeness we will live in a world of dualisms, of forced but false choices between being and doing that result in action that is mere frenzy or in contemplation that is mere escape. Our movement toward the hidden wholeness is not easily mapped because it is different for each person and always a mystery. Annie Dillard has offered some words about downwardness, and about the hidden wholeness toward which it takes us, that are full of insight for our exploration into contemplation-and-action: “In the deeps are the violence and terror of which psychology has warned us. But if you ride these monsters deeper down, if you drop with them farther over the world’s rim, you find what our sciences cannot locate or name, the substrate, the ocean or matrix or ether which buoys the rest, which gives goodness its power for good, and evil its power for evil, the unified field: our complex and inexplicable caring for one another, and for our life together here. This is given. It is not learned”- Again, I believe Dillard is wiser than the culture. When we plumb the depths of full aliveness, we draw close to the source that empowers all else, and in that power that is not only grace but danger, not only healing but wounding, not only life but death………Parker J. Palmer
Possibility is the secret heart of time.