Aging As A Spiritual Practice: A Contemplative Guide To Growing Older And Wiser
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Aging As A Spiritual Practice: A Contemplative Guide To Growing Older And Wiser

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  105 ratings  ·  29 reviews
The bestselling author of Work as a Spiritual Practice presents a new vision of the aging process, awakening a spirit of fulfillment and transformation.

Everything changes. For Buddhist priest and meditation teacher Lewis Richmond, this fundamental Buddhist tenet is the basis for a new inner road map that emerges in the later years, charting an understanding that can bring...more
Kindle Edition, First, 256 pages
Published January 5th 2012 by Gotham Books
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Joan Winnek
Mar 06, 2013 Joan Winnek rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Joan by: Debra Ratner
This book immediately grabbed me with its chapter on lightning strikes. My own lightening strike happened about six months ago, and had several forks.

This is a book to keep and reread for its many insights into aging and the clearest explanation of Buddhism I have found. The writing is engaging, and the contemplative reflections are activities I want to work through, slowly.

Buddhist priest and teacher Lewis Richmond is his latest book Aging as a Spiritual Practice begins with what he believes are the four stages of aging. The first stage “Lightning Strikes,” is a realization that we are growing old. The sensation comes out of nowhere, unexpectedly, like a bolt from above. I am only thirty-five years old, but this is exactly what happened to me recently, before I had even been assigned to read this book as a Library Thing Early Reviewer. Naturally, I was drawn to th...more
I was fortunate to win a copy of this book through Goodreads.

This book is a great resource for those of us that are starting to realize we aren't "young" anymore, or at least as young as we used to be. Richmond goes through the different phases of aging, the first of which is "Lightning Strikes" - that first moment you notice things aren't quite what they used to be (a grey hair, creaky knees, kids going off to college, illness, whatever). He uses examples from his personal life and illnesses to...more
Linda Robinson
The interior of this book is as soft-focus as the exterior picture of the lotus. If you are aging at the same speed the rest of us are, and have not yet made some measure of peace with that, this is the book for you. Richmond handles the inevitability that aging has an end point with Zen calmness, and he shares the feeling with his prose. The book is organized by issues related to getting old, and a reader is free to roam and contemplate. That's how I'll handle the remaining years I have. Roam a...more
Susan Rothenberg
A thoughtful book about some of the issues of aging and ways that spiritual practices can help with the transitions along the way. Though Lew is a Buddhist priest, his suggestions are universal.
Mark Soone
I very seldom give a 1 star rating, so I feel I need to offer a reason. I won this copy on goodreads, based solely upon the title. I guess I should have gone ahead and read the write up on this book. I assumed (I know you should not do that!), off of the title that it would deal with Christian principles towards aging rather than a more universal term of SPIRITUAL! I won't waste my time or yours debating the principles that guide my life and those that are depicted in this book, just leave it th...more
Lewis Richmond is someone I consider a friend on my spiritual path. Forgive me as I become a little sentimental. I met him around 2002 as I was just coming out of the dark ages of my Fundamentalist Christian experience. I was a wreck and was avoiding any aspect of Spirituality. I limped into a bookstore in Sonoma, CA and happened to hear him speaking about his first book, "Work as a Spiritual Practice." It was an idea that had never occurred to me. I was inspired and got the book, but it had a g...more
For me, this book sits somewhere between the available ratings of "It was OK" and "I liked it." Lewis Richmond writes ably enough about the value of living comfortably with aging. He offers exercises to help us do this; he suggests rituals to put us in a receptive frame of mind, and he uses the example of his own near-death illness to good effect. But, as I'm won't to say when it's difficult to find examples that illustrate my general feelings of "reviewer ennui," "it didn't sing to me."

In other...more
If you are new to personal contemplative spiritual practice this book will help you enormously. There are prayers, rituals, and practices easily performed almost anywhere. There is a thoroughly described guide to one day retreat you can do at home. If you are new to buddhist concepts this is a good overview of their application in relation to aging.

If you are not new to personal contemplative spiritual practice, this book offers some good suggestions on applying your practice to the aging proce...more
Kate Lawrence
This has much that will be helpful to the over-60 as well as to younger people who are caring for aging family members. The text is interspersed with the author's reminiscences of studying in his youth with famed Buddhist teacher Shunryu Suzuki, and "Contemplative Reflections" that assist in looking at life in helpful ways quite different from mainstream viewpoints. Not just for Buddhists or meditators, though, the book provides comfort for anyone dealing with aging-related issues. The author, i...more
I got some useful tidbits from this book, and I'm glad I read it, but it will not sit at the top of my heap of inspirational books. I think Richmond made a mistake trying to address the book to readers of spiritual persuasions other than Buddhism. The tactic kind of watered down the Buddhist aspects, and I doubt if it will actually win very many readers of other persuasions. For the most part, I enjoyed his examples, especially the ones that told his own personal story. My favorite was the one a...more
Enjoyable, quick read. Very basic in relation to life changing information. Very easily followed If you haven't read many books on the Buddhist lifestyle. If you have, you may actually be a bit disappointed in this.

THe author relates Buddhism to many other spiritual practices and often doesn't seem to go in depth enough to make this feel like you want to know more.

For a Sunday morning, coffee book... well done.

For a contemplative, make me want to know more and change my life book... eh.

This is a gem of a book that applies to any age. I have been telling my mom about it and am finally passing it on to her but I want it back, Lewis Richmond gives the reader a nice balance of Buddhist principles, anecdotes, and research concerning the aging process allowing for applications in other areas of life. This is a goodreads giveaway copy--and I hope they keep the cover for the release in January--lovely. Worthy of a spot on the shelf for future reference!
Dan Secor
Not a bad book, especially if you are new to Buddhism and haven't grasped the richness of Buddhist philosophy. As for a guide on how to deal with aging, which is something I am grappling with in my practice, the book left me wanting more. Granted, there were many nuggets of wisdom but I felt that it stalled almost halfway in. I do recommend it, but only cautiously if your Buddhist practice is already firmly established.
Lewis Richmond is a Western Tibetan Buddhist and this book is written from that perspective. It is very accessible to all and respectful of other outlooks. I found it relaxing and stimulating at the same time. There is not too much available that addresses this topic, and this book is a good option.
Connie Knapp
I found this book to be very helpful in looking at aging in a different way. I describe myself as a Buddhist Presbyterian (I know, that sounds like an oxymoron) so I am predisposed to this type of spirituality, but I found Richmond's ideas about aging to be comforting, enlightening and encouraging.
Lots of wisdom, much from a Buddhist perspective but not exclusive.
Bishop Bergland
A very good and thought provoking look at our response to aging. I gained many insights from reading this book, and would recommend it to anyone confronting or interested in the changes that occur as we age and our reactions to them!
Warren Liebeman
Interesting first half but the activity suggested at the end was too specific to practioners of Buddhism. There was no suggestions for alternate activities for non practioners. I made notes in my ebook version for future reference.


Whether one comes to awareness that they are "grown up" and aging with each breath at age 30 or at age 80, this book has stories of aging that give examples of accepting and eventually appreciating life.
Great title. Nothing new (well, what did you expect?) But if the title jars you into disbelief, this would be an excellent book to read. Includes a retreat you can arrange for yourself, the same as the ones he does.
Practical guide for those who enjoy meditation as well as reassuring regarding the process of aging. The author lists the positive comtributions we can make even while losses comtinue.
Bring awareness to your journey toward old age and death with joy. Love this book
Nov 17, 2011 Lulu marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I won this book from the first reads giveaways and I am so excited to read it. Thanks.
Very inspiring book. Book was won on Goodreads site. Thank you
very helpful hints for going into old age from a zen priest
Glenda Alexander
I think we all could use a guide like this.
Dec 29, 2013 Katie is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Dad read this in cabo and it intrigued me...
Cyndi Agathocleous
nice... really basic but useful.
Karen Mcgrath
I loved this book.
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Zen Buddhist priest, teacher, and author.
More about Lewis Richmond...
Work as a Spiritual Practice: A Practical Buddhist Approach to Inner Growth and Satisfaction on the Job Healing Lazarus: A Buddhist's Journey from Near Death to New Life A Whole Life's Work: Living Passionately, Growing Spiritually Aging as a Spiritual Practice Ouder worden voor beginners

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