In the 1980s, the Swedish gerontologist Lars Tornstam developeda theory of aging called gerotranscendence. In a study that took more than twenty years, Tornstam interviewed many older people in Sweden, ages sixty-five through 104.
Tornstam found that many of the older people he interviewed had a decreased interest in material things and preferred solitude. They were less self-occupied, while also being more selective about their social activities, and they felt they needed only a few friends. … Also, those who were gerotranscendent believed in a mystery about the universe, and even death had a different meaning for them.
—Richard L. Morgan, Light of Setting Suns: Reflecting on Realities and Mysteries at Ninety Years of Life (Upper Room Books, 2021)
What older persons do you know who transcend their age, and how do they do it? Join the conversation.
The glory of the young is their strength;
the gray hair of experience is the splendor of
—Proverbs 20:29, NLT
Prayer for the Week
Lord of all ages, I feel blessed that you have given me these
bonus years. Help me to live each day as if it were my last,
redeeming whatever time remains. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.
Find out how author Richard L. Morgan has stayed resilient into his 90s despite the many losses that accompany later life. Read more about him here.
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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