Sunday, April 23, 2006

Creativity, spirituality and the art of aging

In its March 2006 issue, Conscious Choice (Chicago) features,
"The Joy of Aging" by Marla Donato. "Think growing old is all about deterioration and decay? Well, think again. Some scientists are now saying that as your brain ages, it can actually regenerate brain cells, and the second half of life may be when you are at your creative best for your highest calling." Donato talks about Carl Jung's ideas about aging and includes:
"Jung "truly believed the second half of life was as important as the first, and that it had very different tasks, both psychological and spiritual," said Jacquelyn A. Mattfeld, the executive director of the Evanston Jung Center. About five years ago, she decided to develop a creative aging program specifically aimed "at the challenges of aging in our society from spiritual and psychological point of view… rather than more practical (matters)." Besides offering regular seminars and partnering with several local colleges including National-Louis University and Oakton Community College to offer courses with titles such as "The Art of Aging," the center recently sponsored a national conference on later-life creativity. It drew speakers from around the country, including author Thomas Moore and musician Johnny Frigo."