Aging as a Spiritual Curriculum

 

Spiritual Passages: Reviews and Comments

Spiritual Passages: Table of Contents and Introduction (an excerpt)

"The Trouble with Successful Aging"
(briefly presents a spiritual alternative to our current models of good aging.)

"Aging into the Spirit: From Traditional Wisdom to Innovative Programs and Communities"
(the spiritual paradigm of aging, and national developments in the "Conscious Aging" movement)

 

AGING AS A SPIRITUAL CURRICULUM

What if the aging process is not a kind of "mistake," a descent into dotage and disability, but rather a grace-filled opportunity? What if the changes we face in life's second half are an ideal curriculum for soul-growth? Dr. Leder is one of the pioneers in studying the spirituality of mid- and later-life, synthesizing contributions from sacred traditions such as Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Native American, and Taoism. His book on this topic, Spiritual Passages: Embracing Life's Sacred Journey, has been called "marvelous," "a classic", " exceptionally rich and readable," "profound and practical," "delightfully written," a book which "could revolutionize the aging of society."

In related work, as a Scholar-in-Residence at Chicago's prestigious Park Ridge Center, Dr. Leder designed a model for "ElderSpirit Centers" - spiritually-based communities for older adults interested in using the later years for inner work and outward service. He is now acting as a consultant to educational and residential communities seeking to actualize this ideal, and provide a new alternative to conventional retirement facilities and senior centers.

Dr. Leder also offers lectures, retreats and workshops around the country on the topic of the spirituality of aging and of life's second half (contact him for a schedule of upcoming events). Above are links to more information about his book, Spiritual Passages, and a couple of articles, one brief, one longer, on related topics.

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