The Grace In Aging
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Learn to use your later years for awakening and spiritual growth. Encouraging, inspiring, and practical, The Grace in Aging invites all those who have ever experienced spiritual longing to awaken in their twilight years. Since aging, in and of itself, does not lead to spiritual maturity, The Grace in Aging suggests and explores causes and conditions that we can create in our lives, just as we are living them, to allow awakening to unfold -- transforming the predictable sufferings of aging into profound opportunities for growth in clarity, love, compassion, and peace. Kathleen Dowling Singh streamlines vast and complex teachings into skillful means and wise views. Straightforward language and piercing questions bring Singh's teachings into the sharp focus of our own lives; the contemplative nature of each chapter allows for an uncommon depth of inquiry. Examples from our lives and from the chatter in our own minds touch the reader personally, offering the chance to absorb the implications deeply and do the work of freeing his or her own mind. Ecumenical in spirit, tone, and language, Singh offers wisdom from teachers from a variety of spiritual backgrounds: Thich Nhat Hanh, the Apostles, Annie Dillard, and more. Lessening our attachments, decreasing our aversions, unbinding what binds us, we bear witness to the possibility of awakening for all beings. The Grace in Aging offers guidelines for older individuals of any wisdom tradition who wish to awaken before they die; no need for caves or seven-year retreats. This is spiritual practice for the lives we live.
In 1986 Dr. David Snowdon, one of the world’s leading experts on Alzheimer’s disease, embarked on a revolutionary scientific study that would forever change the way we view aging—and ultimately living. Dubbed the “Nun Study” because it involves a unique population of 678 Catholic sisters, this remarkable long-term research project has made headlines worldwide with its provocative discoveries. Yet Aging with Grace is more than a groundbreaking health and science book. It is the inspiring human story of these remarkable women—ranging in age from 74 to 106—whose dedication to serving others may help all of us live longer and healthier lives. Totally accessible, with fascinating portraits of the nuns and the scientists who study them, Aging with Grace also offers a wealth of practical findings: • Why building linguistic ability in childhood may protect against Alzheimer’s • Which ordinary foods promote longevity and healthy brain function • Why preventing strokes and depression is key to avoiding Alzheimer’s • What role heredity plays, and why it’s never too late to start an exercise program • How attitude, faith, and community can add years to our lives A prescription for hope, Aging with Grace shows that old age doesn’t have to mean an inevitable slide into illness and disability; rather it can be a time of promise and productivity, intellectual and spiritual vigor—a time of true grace.
Aging with Wisdom and Grace explores the contributions faith can make to optimal aging, providing a Christian perspective on such topics as: loss and diminishment, loneliness and suffering, death and dying, regrets and unhealed wounds, gratitude, and generativity.
Bestselling author Kathleen Dowling Singh (The Grace in Dying) presents an opportunity to view and reflect upon our lives in a new way—as an already unfolding awakening. Kathleen Dowling Singh invites us to enter into an awakened relationship with our lives by exploring our own spiritual biography. Her thoughtful reflections and exercises guide us through the process, step-by-step, of recognizing the ever-presence of grace in our lives and learning to trust it and live from it. This book also offers accounts from renowned teachers, including Rodney Smith, Cynthia Bourgeault, and Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, as well as other long-time practitioners. These intimate first-person accounts offer rare glimpses into early spiritual yearnings, struggles, and realizations—and serve as encouragement and inspiration for us to rediscover our own.
A groundbreaking approach to aging from one of France's best- known clinical psychologists. How should we accept growing old? It's an inevitable progression and yet in Western society the very subject of aging is often taboo and shrouded in anxiety and shame. Not anymore, says Marie de Hennezel, an internationally renowned clinical psychologist and bestselling author. Now that our lives are longer and richer than ever before, it's imperative to demystify our greatest fear and cultivate a positive awareness of aging. In this timely and essential book, de Hennezel offers a fresh perspective on the art of growing old. She confronts head-on the inevitable grief we sustain at the loss of our youth and explains how refusing to age and move forward in life is actually what makes us become old. Combining personal anecdotes with psychological theory, philosophy, and eye-opening scientific research from around the world, she shows why we should look forward to embracing everything aging has to offer in terms of human and spiritual enrichment. The Art of Growing Old is a thought-provoking, brave, and uplifting meditation on the later years as they should be lived.
An invitation to everyday mystics: unbind yourself from the causes of suffering and step into grace. “We all want the freedom of sanity and peace, the undefended inclusiveness of love. We all want refuge in grace.” —Kathleen Dowling Singh, from her introduction to Unbinding Unbinding is a spacious and sophisticated unfolding of one of Buddhism’s subtlest foundational teachings—the truth of dependent origination—offered in an utterly intimate voice. Kathleen Dowling Singh offers lyrical reflections on timeless truths and contemplative exercises accessible to anyone, opening the door of insight to all. Drawing on the language and teachings of Buddhism, Unbinding invites everyday mystics from all traditions—or none—to encounter the sacred and experience grace firsthand. Singh shows how illusions of ego obscure our true, unbounded nature and trap us in suffering—as she helps the reader move ever more deeply into living from gratitude, wisdom, and love.
From the revered author of the bestselling The Hidden Life of Dogs, a witty, engaging, life-affirming account of the joy, strength, and wisdom that comes with age. Elizabeth Marshall Thomas has spent a lifetime observing the natural world, chronicling the customs of pre-contact hunter-gatherers and the secret lives of deer and dogs. In this book, the capstone of her long career, Thomas, now eighty-eight, turns her keen eye to her own life. The result is an account of growing old that is at once funny and charming and intimate and profound, both a memoir and a life-affirming map all of us may follow to embrace our later years with grace and dignity. A charmingly intimate account and a broad look at the social and historical traditions related to aging, Growing Old explores a wide range of issues connected with growing older, from stereotypes of the elderly as burdensome to the methods of burial humans have used throughout history to how to deal with a concerned neighbor who assumes you’re buying cat food to eat for dinner. Written with the wit of Nora Ephron’s I Feel Bad About My Neck and the lyrical beauty and serene wisdom of When Breath Becomes Air, Growing Old is an expansive and deeply personal paean to the beauty and the brevity of life that offers understanding for everyone, regardless of age.
'Elder Grace' is a love song to the notability of aging. The work, based on the travelling photographic exhibition of the same name, features personal portraits of African-American elders and their thoughts about the experience of aging.
Explains the aging process based on the Buddhist tenet about the inevitability of change, with descriptions of the four key stages of aging and advice about awareness, adaptation, and acceptance.
In this brilliantly conceived and beautifully written book, Kathleen Dowling Singh illuminates the profound psychological and spiritual transformations experiences by the dying as the natural process of death reconnects them with the source of their being. Examining the end of life in the light of current psychological understanding, religious wisdom, and compassionate medical science, The Grace of Dying offers a fresh, deeply comforting message of hope and courage as we contemplate the meaning of our mortality. While the prevailing Western medical tradition has seen death as an enemy to be fought and overcome, Singh offers a richer and more rewarding path of understanding. Combining extensive training and education in developmental psychology with profound spiritual insight, she balances expert analysis with moving accounts drawn from her experiences working with hundreds of dying patients at a large hospice. Singh moves beyond the five stages of dying revealed in Kübler-Ross's classic On Death and Dying, and finds in the "nearing death experience" even more significant and forming stages of surrender and transcendence. These stages involve the qualities of grace: letting go, radiance, focusing inward, silence, a sense of the sacred, wisdom, intensity, and, in the end, a merging with Spirit. Through this intense process, we come to experience at last the reality of our true self, which transcends our finite ego and bodily existence, and our merging with the source of being from which we originated. Dying is safe. In clear, nontechnical language, Singh reveals the transformations that come with dying, using the vocabulary of growing Western, as well as Eastern, wisdom. Written for those aware that their life is coming to an end, those who care for the dying, and, ultimately, for all of us who inevitably face our owndeath and the deaths of the people we love, The Grace in Dying reveals that dying is the most transforming, powerful, and spiritually rich of life's experiences.