whether individuals practice their ` religion ' in a spiritual, nonorganisational way, or in an organisational way, may play a role for development towards gerotranscendence
@Lewin, F. A. (2001). Gerotranscendence and different cultural settings. Ageing and Society, 21(4), 395-415
He describes the dimensions or signs of gerotranscendence as ontological changes on three levels : the cosmic level, the self level, and the social and individual relations level (Tornstam 1996: 42-3). These levels are explained as follows :
The cosmic level
- Time and space. Changes in the definitions of time and space develop. For example the transcendence of borders between past and present occurs.
- Connection to earlier generations. Increasing attachment. A change from link to chain perspective ensues.
- Life and death. The fear of death disappears and a new comprehension of life and death results.
- Mystery in life. The mystery dimension in life is accepted.
- Rejoicing. From grand events to subtle experiences, the joy of experiencing macrocosmos in microcosmos materializes.
- Self confrontation. The discovery of hidden aspects of the self - both good and bad - occurs.
- Decrease of self-centredness. The self is removed from the centre of one's universe.
- Development of body-transcendence. The care of body continues, but the individual is not obsessed with it.
- Self-transcendence. A shift occurs from egoism to altruism.
- Rediscovery of the child within. The individual experiences return to and transfiguration of childhood.
- Ego-integrity. The individual realizes that the pieces of life's jigsaw puzzle form a wholeness.
Social and individual relations
- Changed meaning and importance of relations. One becomes more selective and less interested in superficial relations, exhibiting an increasing need for solitude.
- Role play. An understanding of the difference between self and role takes place, sometimes with an urge to abandon roles. A new comforting understanding of the necessity of roles in life often results.
- Emancipated innocence. Innocence enhances maturity.
- Modern asceticism. An understanding of the petrifying gravity of wealth and the freedom of `asceticism ' develops.
- Everyday wisdom. The difficulty in separating right from wrong and withholding from judgements and giving advice is discerned. Transcendence of the rightwrong duality ensues.
@Tornstam, L. 1996. Gerotranscendence ± a theory about maturing into old age. Journal
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