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Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

The Forever-Young Delusion

A common mental illness not yet named. I vote for DSM-6: FoYoD.

I once saw someone of 70 years standing on a kitchen chair painting the ceiling. What are you doing; that’s dangerous, I called out. She replied: I also did this when I was a soldier. I said: But then you were 17; now you’re 70. She didn’t see the point. Soon, she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

Yet, I think that many of my age group have no further illness than falsely assuming that we can still do what we always did with no trouble at all.

So often, I’ve seen a pensioner get up on the bus to give his seat to an unpregnant teenage girl to show he’s a (crazy) gentleman.

Thanks to better healthcare, even for the masses, people are getting older. That means more healthy older people. But, there is a caveat.

True, Medical Science tries to get us to reach immortality by stopping the most common killers, healing all illnesses, preventing death, and stopping and reversing aging. But they’re not there yet, but they’re getting there.

Older people generally can’t run as much and fast as we did before, can’t lift as much, can’t eat as brutally, etc. If we fall, we’re in greater danger of breaking bones that refuse to heal. More easily, we can from pneumonia.

Yet, fortunately, or unfortunately, we often don’t feel older. And we ignore that we look older. Our skin is thinner, but our makeup or plastic surgery hides that. Or, before the cataract operation, our eyes don’t see that. Our hairline resides, and our fitness is going downhill gradually.

There is nothing more understandable than just ignoring physical decline.

But that is unhealthy. We should adjust our risk-taking, our intake, our fitness regime, and our sleeping hours to our biological age. Not because we are weak, unfit, or sick, but because we’re not that young anymore.

Emotionally and relationally, we might be trans-generational: 25-year-olds trapped in bodies of 70. But in self-care, we’d better acknowledge our age.

We need to change the setup of our lives

The old model needs revision for our collective and individual good

Generally, lives would go like this in the West:

  • Getting born
  • Getting an education, learning a trade
  • Going to work
  • Going on pension
  • Death.

The exceptions are male manual laborers who often don’t reach the age of their pension although they pay their whole working lives toward them. This must change. A massive effort must be made so that male blue-collar workers live longer, and until that happens, go on pension a decade earlier for the same money. Currently, their only fairness is that they often have no responsibilities in the evening or after their shifts. Yet, this frequently doesn’t suffice to recover from their physical work enough. Farmers and others who work around the clock don’t even have that time to relax.

But, now we are getting older by the decades in the West, lives must begin to look like this:

  • Getting born
  • Getting an education, learning a trade and activism
  • Going to work less, having time for entertainment and activism
  • Going on pension as late as one wants and can
  • Death, soon, hopefully, no more.

Too much is wrong with society to not be a lifelong activist.

A set pension age makes no sense anymore now the sitting POTUS just turned 80 and counting.

Physicians and medical scientists are working around the globe and clock on healing the most common sicknesses, preventing and healing the greatest killers, and then, priority no doubt will shift to healing from all illness, preventing and healing all accidental wounding, halting and reversing any aging, and then, postponing death forever for all.

We need to care more about the lives of people in dictatorships and less-wealthy areas. Also, one sick person anywhere can unleash a deadly pandemic. But also, we can’t go on with worldwide unfairness we created.

Now life expectancy has changed, we must change what we expect of life.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, an almost daily blog contributor to the Times of Israel, and previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. He doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit about what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and education contribute to his visions. * If you don't know the Dutch, get an American peek behind the scenes here: https://youtu.be/QMPp6h6r72M * To find less-recent posts on subject XXX among his over 1600 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe, here: https://mmvanzuiden.wordpress.com/. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. Yet, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people who don't deserve that. He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust, and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. * One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. He loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, anti-elitism, anti-bigotry and supremacy, for Zionism, Intersectionality, and non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (https://diethylstilbestrol.co.uk/studies/des-and-psychological-health/), born in 1953 to parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, empowering therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids non-violently. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's being a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. He lives with his library in Jerusalem. Feel free to contact him. * His writing has been made possible by a (second-generation) Holocaust survivors' allowance from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here: https://www.amazon.com/s?i=stripbooks&rh=p_27%3AMoshe-Mordechai%2FMaurits+van+Zuiden&s=relevancerank&text=Moshe-Mordechai%2FMaurits+van+Zuiden&ref=dp_byline_sr_book_1
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