The Open Road

Pathways of Conscious Aging
with Gail Straub

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For several years now, a feisty and insistent group of my students have been asking me to offer retreats on conscious aging. At first I hemmed and hawed, resisted mightily, saying I didn’t feel qualified, and surely someone else could do this better than me! But now I have realized that no one is actually qualified to “teach us” conscious aging because we can only do that in community through a co-creative dialog where we create the "The Open Road” together. Along with you, I know we can create that community and forge new pathways toward growing older with joy, audacity, spiritual depth, and dignity.

As I age, one of the most striking (and alarming) issues is how few positive visions exist for growing old. In every conversation I have with aging friends, colleagues, or students, we fully realize that the current paradigm around getting old is useless and even destructive; but we have very few new visions to replace the outdated ones, to inspire us to embrace aging with fresh perspectives. The Open Road: Pathways of Conscious Aging is an invitation to create a visionary community where we craft new attitudes, beliefs, practices, rituals, and celebrations for growing old. Teilhard de Chardin spoke about being pilgrims of the future and I like to think of us as pilgrims of the future of conscious aging. Here are the Four Pathways we pilgrims will explore.