“Old age, calm, expanded, broad with the haughty breadth of the universe.”
—Walt Whitman, “Song of the Open Road”
As we age, our imagination serves as a powerful ally by helping us embrace the complex paradoxes of decay and wisdom, revolt and adaptation, and denial and acceptance. It loosens our ego’s grip and guides us to surrender to the vast unknown of growing old. Here on the open road of our creativity, we can reinvent ourselves in surprising ways that sustain meaning and joy in later life.
Gail Straub offers this workshop as a cocreative dialog forging new pathways toward conscious aging in which we focus on four major themes: spirituality, work, creativity, and community.
Under the theme of spirituality, we seek to identify what to pay attention to and what to clear away as we age, and learn to let go of ego concerns as a spiritual practice for dying. As we reflect on work, we look for ways to work less but work deeper, and explore how to offer our wisdom to the world through mentoring.
When we consider creativity, we explore ways to manifest our unfulfilled dreams, and share our wild and unexpected impulses. Finally, as we think about community, we delve into difficult conversations and unspoken taboos about aging, and cultivate untapped aspects of compassion required as caretakers for both our parents and each other.
This workshop is highly experiential and includes guided meditation, artwork, and a council on conscious aging where we share our fears, confusions, tears, and laughter.