The First Time Ram Dass Felt Old

Ben Hart
Ben Hart:
International Speaker and Writer, VP of Marketing at The Shift Network

What if you could grow older with true joy and ease?

Every single day, we are aging. Regardless of when each of us realizes this, the fact remains, that for many of us, the experience of aging can bring up a lot of anxiety, sadness and fear.

But it doesn’t have to be that way...

Renowned spiritual teacher and author Ram Dass is no stranger to the concept of “conscious aging.” Best known for his books Be Here Now and Still Here: Embracing Aging Changing and Dying, 85-year-old Ram Dass views aging as a springboard for more conscious living and spiritual growth.

In 1997, he experienced a near fatal stroke that left him in all-round-care, which he later said “was a stroke of luck.” Since then he continues to delve into the aspects of aging that terrify most of us and shows us that it’s possible to stay present in the midst of suffering.

In this 7-minute video watch as Ram Dass’ shares a humourous and insightful story about the first time he realized he was getting older, how he felt about it, and what he did — and see if it offers insight into your own relationship to aging and the pitfalls you can choose to avoid.

Here’s what Ram Dass covers in this insightful video:

  • (1:04) — The moment Ram Dass first thought of himself as a “senior citizen” and how that relates to your own journey of aging.
  • (3:03) — The “suit” of meaning we all put on about aging that shapes our attitudes and beliefs.
  • (3:49) — The issue of “less than” our society creates around getting older.
  • (4:38) — A powerful experience in India which showed Ram Dass how he’d bought into western ideas about aging and an alternative way to look at it.
  • (6:44) — How to avoid ending up “like a frog in boiling water” in your aging journey.

Indeed, the process of aging can be a time in which you harvest more love, joy and wisdom and occupy a place of honor, service and meaning in your family and community. But it’s not easy.

How do you feel about the aging process? What realizations have you had around aging? We’d love to hear from you!

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Have you been touched by Ram Dass’ teachings in this video or elsewhere? Share your thoughts in the comments below.