What I Like About Old Age
By Swami Kriyananda
What I like about old age is that it gives a person time to experience the consequences of how he has lived. If he has lived a mediocre or a bad life, of course, those consequences will not be pleasant, but if he has lived to help others, and to serve God, he finds old age a particularly happy time of life. I have seen many young people fixed in their ideas. In old age, they will be what Master called "psychological antiques." But I see, in my own life, that I was more dogmatic as a young man than I am today. I am open to all novelties, weigh them freely in the balance and decide whether they are true. In technology, I must add, I am somewhat befuddled, but such things don't really interest me, for they don't touch on what is true; they are merely factual. Old people become boxed in by their ideas. I find myself increasingly free inside. The joy of youth is an expression of youthful energy, but my joy is a calm, increasing inner bliss, The understanding of youth is restless. Mine has become calm. The desires of youth are turbulent. For myself, I have always wanted only one thing: I have wanted everyone to find happiness. At first, that desire was a passion; now it has become simply a calm wish to share my bliss with all. Although I still work, I don't feel a need to reach out to anyone. If my body suffers, I don't suffer at all, because I know I am not my body. If others disagree with me, I feel no need to convince them otherwise. I give everyone the freedom simply to be himself. I used to be troubled by sexual desire. Now, those desires have simply evaporated. They are meaningless to me. There used to be a little cynicism in my humor. Now, it is completely kindly. I wish everyone well, even when I find the things I and others do amusing. Though I still work, I feel no need to work. I am always happy, always grateful. Has it all been worthwhile? I have experienced many difficulties in this life, but to me it has seemed easy simply because I have found it all to be so very worthwhile.
© Ananda Church of Self-Realization 2014