“Let me say this as emphatically as possible: To despise the fact of aging is not only to despise life but to display a pitiful ignorance of the nature of life.

Youth is not a state to be preserved but a state to be transcended. Youth has strength, but it does not have skill, which, in the long run, is the most potent strength. Youth has speed, but it does not have efficiency, which, in the long run, is the only effective way of obtaining goals. Youth is quick, but it is not deliberate, and deliberation is the only way to make correct decisions. Youth has energy and intelligence, but it does not have the judgment necessary to make the best use of that energy and intelligence. Measured judgment in the end, is the only guarantor of intelligent behavior.

Youth has the beauty of genetic endowment, but it does not have the beauty of real achievement. Youth has the glow of promise, but it does not have the radiance of accomplishment. Youth is a time of seeding and cultivation, but it is not a time of fruiting and harvest. Youth is a state of ignorance and innocence, but it is not a state of knowledge and wisdom. Youth is a state of emptiness awaiting fullness, a state of possibility awaiting actualization, a state of beginning awaiting transcendence.

In short, youth is a state to be put behind us as we grow taller and deeper and fuller. Unless we understand that life and aging are a process of growth and progress, we will never know the first principles of living. Nor will we understand what youth is all about: an explosive yearning to grow taller and deeper and fuller and transcend oneself. It is by losing this yearning that we forget the first principles of living and begin to worship a false and superficial image of youthfulness.”

~ Quoted from the book “Somatics” by Thomas Hanna

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