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My 85th PDF Print E-mail
Written by Richard Griffin   
Tuesday, August 20 2013 18:31

My 85th birthday on the nineteenth day of August would seem a much older age level to me were it not for my friend Dan.  As an earlier blog noted, he was 101 on the fourth day of this month.  Somehow, his being so much older than I reduces my feel of personal antiquity.

So does the arthritic malfunctioning of my right knee.  It’s the only physical ailment that reduces my functioning to any notable degree.  Unfortunately it limits my walking capability enough to make me often hobble. When I walk through Harvard Square I must look like the oldsters who wend their way carefully, looking ahead of each step so as to fight off any likelihood of falling.

Yesterday noontime I visited the ball field where, over a period of many years, I have been accustomed to play softball.  The knee problem has blocked my being able to play any more.  However, I went there in order to try throwing and catching the ball with my friends.  I managed to do both rather better than I expected but not enough for me to try practice playing first base, my usual position.

So many of my age peers have died, some many years ago, that it makes me wonder when my turn will come.  I think about this likelihood often and contrast in my mind the after-death views of my Christian faith with many friends who believe there is no after- life. When you live in a university environment as I do, it’s easy to find many who regard religious views of it all entirely unlikely.

However, my advance into the late years leads me to appreciate the values of religion and spirituality. Though there is much espoused by religious people that I do not at all believe, much less espouse, I continue to see a great deal in my tradition as important both for individuals and for the community. Reaching 85 makes reflection on this matter of even greater importance.