March 8th at 10 AM PT/ 7 PM CET

Maturing into Gerotranscendence


Some of our previous show guests are coming together to discuss their ideas about the huge benefits which arise with ageing, especially the experience of transcendence. Besides Heidi and Mark, the following people took part in the discussion:

Tom Christensen

Susan Farling

Monia Fruehwirth

Please take the time and watch their individual contributions to our series. Titles and links below!

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STREAMED LIVE HERE on March 8th 2018

Gerotranscendence - a panel discussion

(Video quality improves as the show progresses)

00:00 Mechanics and Intros: Susan Farling, Tom Christensen, and Moni(k)a Fruehwirth (with video problems). Each talks about personal reasons as well as professional.

10:00 The paper, Gerotranscendence, by Lars Tornstam, Ph.D. isavailable for free download HERE: 10:20 What is it, first from Monia, with some technical info from Heidi about the well-known meditative states of consciousness, about her mother’s experience.

12:05 Tom’s history, observations and experience: Perhaps “normal” practices to encourage “enlightenment” are “holding pens” until they naturally mature “vertically” and thus simply grow into a gerotranscendent state. A new vertical stage of cognitive complexity! In contrast to “horizontal” development where one simply adds more information to an already existent stage.  

14:20 About 25% enter that “higher” or “later” stage with ageing, but most do not!

15:25 Susan adds that interests and passion can develop that vertical boost, in her own experience and that of clients and others.

18:18 Monia makes her first mention of Ken Wilber! Being alive is a practice in itself! She remarks that before you are of a certain age you “must” take yourself seriously, unfortunately. Humor is a landmark of of gerotranscendence.

22:15 Tom in support quotes the Hindu stages which include the 4th quarters of life.  Other traditions are noted.

24:20 Heidi acknowledges viewers and their comments. Tom notes the lack of language for describing these latest stages. But some traditions can provide that language. He terms depth as the end of the resistance to all the tragedy in one’s life.

28:08 Susan sees mentoring as a way for transmitting transcendence in our culture.  Heidi mentions “The Oldies Show”. Monia offers other opportunities.

33:00 Susan describes some groups she is aware of, “I think that awareness is coming!”
34:40 Tom notes that he sees young people with close to the complexity that he has needed his whole lifetime to reach BUT they don’t have the depth that experience provides, and they lack the language for it.  And that’s what they WILL provide to the world!

36:56 Monia notes her different experience of never having a crisis!

39:50 Heidi recalls a mentoring group which has stopped taking new “mentors” because they so greatly outnumber interested younger people!

41:00 Tom allows as how young people are not getting their “guidance” from older people anymore but rather from the media (including what we’re doing online now!). So  gerotranscendence is out as an attractive term!

43:05 How can we each say how we came to know how we have come to know that we have come to this new stage.  Susan notes how less caught up in personalities she now is. Tom reminds us that we’re speaking to each other here so we can affirm that we’re valuable and can note how wide is our circle of care and attempting to expand it as we speak daily. We need language to lift the cloud of unspeakability that so many elders feel. Monia points out that our consumer habits can affect the larger society in a better direction.  Save our energy, for example, by texting rather than phoning. Heidi’s no longer caring about developing her singing “career”, and getting to know the right people. An openness to the moment, a flow, astonishment, overwhelm but not too overwhelmed.

56:12 Tom notes; “Oh, this is where I’ve been coming all my life, and this is where I am.  I could not have foreseen this…and neither can younger people now!” There’s no place to go because this is where we are all the time! Susan got it quite early.

59:00 Tom talks about adding our grains of salt to the soup

1:00:00 Heidi brings up intuition to add to the soup! Monia adds what a relief it is to no longer feel “different” as we did in the past.  Mark notes that despite himself he has left a mark upon the world. Monia will spend some time looking for a better term than gerotranscendence!  Susan adds to Tom’s salt in the soup with the gratitude she feels in interactions with others that defines the exactness of that soup flavor.

1:04:00 Heidi realises that she can now do things that were good for her AND also good for others, not the way she was taught as a child that her needs were not important.Tom’s term is living in paradox!

1:05:40 Goodbyes, thank yous and announcements


In our Facebook Group “Masterminding Integral Ageing” somebody posted an article which created some attnetion to the point that we would like to come together to talk about the topic: Gerotranscendence. The experience of reaching a stage in our personal development which seems to transcend life as we have known it before.

What is that? How does it feel? what is different in everyday life? All these topics to explore in our conversation.

Please don’t hesitate to chime in when you feel like having a contribution to make to this phenomena.

You find the info of our panel members on their personal event-page:

Unmasking Internalized Ageism  with Susan Farling

New Capacities Emerge in our Minds as we Age  with Tom Christensen

Integral Life Practice in any Age?  with Monia Fruehwirth


Article by Lars Tornstam, Ph.D. Uppsala, Sweden

Download the paper HERE


May this conversation be a testimonial of his uniqueness in heart, mind and spirit!