Going to Essence: Aging into Wisdom with Intention and Grace is a compilation of forty-seven insightful poems, vignettes, and haiku. This work is accompanied by gorgeous nature photography from five photographers: internationally award-winning photographer David Foster (www.davidfosterimages.net), Cindy Addiss, Bryan P Sperry (www.bpsperryphotography.com), Julie Hliboki, and David Addiss.
These offerings invite the reader to cultivate the wisdom that arises through the ache and awe of aging. Julie Hliboki writes in her introduction, "Being human means we will ache; we will suffer. We will find ourselves at times confused, lonely, in pain, grief-stricken, outraged, fearful, depressed, hopeless-the ache we all have felt in body, mind, and spirit. And being human means we will experience awe in the miracles we witness every day-wonder, gratitude, friendship, love, kindness, beauty, and compassion. As we age, we have an opportunity to move more deliberately toward awe even as our aches increase. We can move toward acceptance and gratitude and away from resistance and bitterness. We can move toward love and compassion and away from judgments and condemnation. We can move toward wholeness and grace even as age unravels our body and mind. It is our essence-our essential nature-to become wise from our lifetime of experiences."
The forty-seven offerings are based on Dr. Hliboki's work over the past decade providing spiritual healthcare and well-being. In her work, Hliboki says, she has "witnessed incredible courage, strength, dignity, faith, love, and friendship in the face of impossible hardship, unbearable pain, and intense suffering. The people I have accompanied are stellar examples of what it means to cultivate wisdom as we age-not ever easy but necessary for our spiritual, emotional, and mental health. Wisdom enhances our well-being no matter our physical condition." Included with each poem and vignette is an invitational Intention and Grace meditation prompt for the reader to practice cultivating their own inherent wisdom.
May you embrace the aging process-allowing it to reveal your essence, to cultivate your inherent wisdom, and to help you live with intention and grace.