Secrets of Magic 21: Honor the stages of life

The year moves around in the cycle of the seasons that starts with spring, moves through summer and fall, ends in winter, and begins with spring again. The seasons teach us about growth, rest, and renewal.

As we move through the cycle of the seasons, we find ourselves on the same place on the wheel, but in a different place in our own lives. For us, the seasonal round is a spiral, taking us a little farther on our own paths with each spin of the wheel.

Wherever we are in our own life spiral, we often want to be somewhere else! As children we longed to be old enough to do things that we couldn’t yet do. In our older years we wish for the resilience and beauty of youth. We hide our age, pushing our young selves to be taller and stronger, or concealing our graying hair. One of the sources of unhappiness in life is dissatisfaction with our age.

One of the secrets of magic is to find the power in our place on the spiral. When we are young, we can enjoy the flexibility of our bodies and minds and our ability to learn new things. In older years we can draw on the experiences we have had. They allow us to avoid our earlier mistakes and teach us about what works to make us happy and healthy in our lives.

In school, at work, and in social groups, we tend to seek out people who are our own age. We relate most easily to those who are experiencing the same life issues that we are facing. When we seek out older and younger people we can bring the energy of the human life cycle into our lives. Relating to children reminds us to keep our minds flexible and explore possibilities. Talking to elders lets us draw on their experiences and prepare ourselves for the time we reach their ages.

When we honor the stages of life, accepting and enjoying our own age, and relating to others of our own age and different ages, we center ourselves in the experience of our own lives.

I honor the stages of life.

Practice: Honoring your age

Think about your current age. What disadvantages do you experience because of your age? What advantages does your current age provide for you?

Think about how your culture views your age. Are people of your age honored for their contributions, or do you experience limitations?

Think about the youngest person you know and the oldest person you know. What do you learn from each of them?

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