What is the Purpose of a Long Life?

Throughout history most successful and long-lived civilizations have held a place of respect for elders, and benefited from their life wisdom. By and large this tradition is missing today, to the detriment not only of elders but also of society. *daysfinal

Each moment, each day, each one of us grows older. Thanks to medical advances and wide emphasis on personal fitness, most people will live long enough to be considered old. The average life span has, in fact, been steadily increasing since the dawn of the Twentieth Century, and this trend will likely continue in the Twenty-first Century.

This reality raises some critical questions: What is the purpose of a long life? What can and should older people do with their extended years? What roles do older people have in modern societies?

As far back as five millennia ago the Greeks knew a basic life lesson that remains relevant today. Socrates put it succinctly: “the unexamined life is not worth living.”

With that foundational understanding in mind, and after a career of interviewing learned and insightful elders, I assembled an eBook of quotations, from all times and all cultures: Teach Us to Number Our Days. My intention was to inspire readers to reflect on how we might most wisely journey through advanced maturity.

I learned a lot putting this eBook together, and feel privileged to share it.

Age is very mysterious because the essence of the human being – the soul – actually never ages. It’s only the outer covering of the individual that changes.” ~ Beatrice Wood