16 March 2023

23S Week 1: Aging with Wisdom: Opportunities and Challenges

Ival Stratford Kovner
Ival and Ron sitting at Trail Train Stop NY State with Cole

AppalachiANNA on the 75th birthday of the Appalachian Trail
The trail will be 86 on 8/12/12. 
Youngest female recently finished -age 15.
A 76 year old  female had 300 miles to go!

Karen Sheahan was a flight attendant for 35 years and brings a global view.

Lindsa Vallee's poetry told the story of a self-sown sunflower seed that grew to 
the height of her second floor porch and remained strong even after its leaves 
had dried up and its drooping head was bursting with seeds that fed the birds.

Two corellas share a sunflower head

Click here for lecture by Olivia Ames Hoblitzelle

Olivia Ames Hoblitzelle, a writer and teacher, was formerly the Associate Director of the Mind/Body Clinic and a Teaching Fellow of the Mind/Body Medical Institute, where she pioneered how to bring meditation, yoga, and cognitive behavioral therapy into the medical domain to treat stress-related and chronic illness. She and her team developed one of the first training programs in Mind/Body medicine in the country and trained health professionals under the auspices of Harvard Medical School.

Formerly a therapist in private practice and a Co-Director of Greenhouse, an alternative mental health collective, Olivia worked with individuals, couples, and groups. She also spent years serving as a Hospice volunteer.

Olivia's teaching and writing are inspired by over forty years of practice in psychology, Buddhist meditation, and other wisdom traditions. In addition to her roots in Christianity, she has practiced primarily Vipassana (Insight Meditation) and Tibetan Buddhism, as well as in a devotional tradition from India. 

Having taught contemplative practices in a wide variety of settings such as government agencies, hospitals, churches, businesses, school systems, and meditation centers, she is currently focusing on conscious aging, elder issues, and living the contemplative life.

Her award winning book, Ten Thousand Joys & Ten Thousand Sorrows: A Couple's Journey Through Alzheimer's, is a narrative memoir of how she and her husband handled his illness, drawing inspiration from their background in Buddhist practice. Her book was translated into Chinese, Korean, Dutch, and Japanese, and recorded for the National Library Service for the Blind. Now an elder with two grown children and four grandsons, she lives in Massachusetts and loves to spend time in Vermont where she grows vegetables, welcomes family and friends, and steeps herself in the glories of nature.


Prayer for the Grace to Age Well  By Teilhard de ChardinThe Divine Milieu

When the signs of age begin to mark my body, and still more when they touch my mind, 

When the illness that is to diminish me or carry me off strikes from without or is born within me;

When the painful moment comes to which I suddenly awaken to the fact that I am growing ill or growing old; and

Above all at the last moment when I feel I am losing hold of myself and am absolutely passive within the hands of the great unknown forces that have formed me,

In all these dark moments, 0 God,

Grant that I may understand that it is youprovided only my faith is strong enough

who is painfully parting the fibers of my being in order to penetrate to the very marrow of my substance and bear me away within yourself.

Henri Nouwen, Dutch priest and author 

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