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Life Paradigm

Excerpt from Daily Cures, Wisdom for Healthy Aging by Connie Mason Michaelis

What is your life view? I’ve been thinking of two particular paradigms that have a profound effect on one’s attitude about aging.  Whether one has a deep spiritual basis for understanding or a pragmatic scientific approach, our experience of life will grow out of that view. All tombstones have a dash between the birth and death years. The question is, “How will you live the dash?”  The first life view paradigm is a logical/linear approach. Many feel that birth is the beginning of a step-by-step process that leads to the end. At some point along the bell curve, one would reach a pinnacle and then a decline to death. With this approach, an individual would expect a reduction in life force throughout life. We might imagine that this person looks at life’s milestones in a remorseful way. After a certain age, birthdays are simple reminders of decline.


The other view, highly preferable as far as I am concerned, is a circular/spiral view. If we could draw a visual of it, it might be a line that started in long slow spirals and proceeds upward to a spire like the top of a cone or like climbing up a mountain. This model of life does not diminish but grows higher and more specific. Birthdays become a passage to the highest and best. There is a general excitement and anticipation in life. There is always time for self-improvement and personal growth. Truly, aging is a privilege. Paradigms can change in a heartbeat if an individual is open to new ideas. Our culture as a whole is much more logical and linear; if you don’t question that view, you are swept away with a world that sees youth as more valuable than age. There is nothing further from the truth. Keep the birthdays coming; you’re getting better and better!



A beautiful lady is an accident of nature; a beautiful old lady is a work of art.” Louis Nizer

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