What is an elder?

An elder is a person who is still growing, still a learner, still with potential, and whose life continues to have within it promise for and connection to the future. An elder is still in pursuit of happiness, joy and pleasure, and her or his birthright to these remains intact.

Moreover, an elder is a person who deserves respect and honor and whose work is to synthesize wisdom from long life experience and formulate this into a legacy for future generations.


Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, From Age-ing to Sage-ing.

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2 Responses to What is an elder?

  1. I was so pleased to see “elder” and not “senior” here. Just as we need to take back the term “citizen” and discard “consumer” identity, we need to reclaim “elder”, a status that has dignity and solid presence, and discard the 1938 invention, “senior citizen” that has no presence at all, regardless of the intention of the individual who coined it. I hope this wonderful initiative will rename itself Canadian Elder CoHousing. A few friends and I have wondered about this possibility of living communally again (which had its aggravating moments, or sometimes short respite moments from nearly constant aggravation). How exciting to read about what all of you involved in this this initiative are up to in the Times Colonist today.

  2. Home care says:

    Absolutely, there is a big difference in two words senior and elder. Elder word is used for those who are senior and they deserve a dignity i.e., a respectable position in the society but a senior may be anyone even if he does not deserves the respect by others. So “home care” services are meant for elders not for seniors.

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