We Keep Growing—Even in Retirement

woman-playing-pianoBy Harold Klemp

An ECKist from England wrote me. He was telling me about how years ago when he was a young man, he was planning for his retirement. In those days, he said he still believed in retirement. You’re young, and what do you do? You work your whole life so that someday you can retire. And do what? Wait? Just stop living? As the young man grew up, he found a fallacy in the idea of retirement. Even though you retire from your job, you cannot retire from living.

A lot of people make that mistake when they retire from a job. In a way, they almost retire from living. This is when all their problems start to increase. Because they stop learning how to take care of themselves.

As we get older, our bodies don’t respond the same way they used to. That means the foods and the nutrition that we were used to just aren’t adequate anymore. Survival is a day-by-day lesson. It means you’ve got to keep learning, retired or not. Sometimes when people retire, they forget to keep growing in the areas of survival. They forget to ask, “How do I eat better?” or “What better nutrition do I need now? What isn’t in the soil today that used to be there in 1940 when good food came straight from the land?” Things have changed. You’ve got to keep growing, because that’s part of the spiritual law of survival.

Excerpted from Our Spiritual Wake-Up Calls, Mahanta Transcripts, Book 15.


37 Responses to We Keep Growing—Even in Retirement

  1. Kevin says:

    I just retired from my job 6 months ago. That turned out to be a mistake. I am a relatively solitary person and also a simple person, not very
    outgoing. So giving up my only way of making some kind of contribution to life has caused an imbalance and much pain. When Divine Spirit
    comes in, it has to flow out somewhere. This is where balance and being grounded come in. One must make some kind of contribution.
    Be of service. So now I struggle with staying in balance and am looking for a job again. For anyone who is approaching retirement age,
    ask yourself whether or not you are still capable of making a contribution by staying in your job. Or do you just want to retire because it’s
    the thing to do? Do you have dreams of how life will be so much better once you are retired? Have you asked yourself what will you actually
    DO with the next 20 to 30 years of your life? If you do, you might be happier than I am now.


    Well that is a real pleasure to meet you Wah Z since I meet with your teaching things are not the same again there is a great changes in fact my life have taken a very good condition and results a lot of improvement all this time if I knew you before I should have been far by now but not the less I am quite happy with my self and others people around me there no words to describe the way my life is presently. I am so grateful. May the blessings be!!!

  3. Myriam Jarsky says:

    Thanks for this confirmation of what I have been learning the last few years, after my husband translated having needed my fulltime care for a year. Being already well past the age of 65, I decided not to go back to work (I was self-employed but my qualifications allow me pretty much to pick up new work anytime). The first year after my husband’s passing I was busy with settling his affairs and cleaning out his things and rearranging the house to suit my needs. At the same time, I was facing myself every day and in the second year that process intensified. What meaning and purpose does my life have now? (Plenty, it seems.) I am going through some changes in my health now that are worrying me but I know the Mahanta is with me through all of it.

  4. Bill Marcus says:

    Thank you Mahanta , for your wonderful message about retirement. If we retire from life we begin to die. Its also very good to keep on top and aware of health issues. My health keeps changing and I have to watch it! In many of your talks you mention books on health that you have found helpful in your own search for better health.. I appreciate all your wisdom that you offer!
    Thank you for all your love and guidance.. I appreciate all that you do! 🙂

    May the Blessings Be!!!

  5. anna peluso colella says:

    After Hurricane Sandy took everything I owned (and almost my life) I was offered a subsidized apartment in a Catholic Charities owned building for seniors. It houses a community senior center which I joined with others from all religions and walks of life. Having worked for record companies (and later with the youth group in Minnesota for the head of Eckankar International), I was drawn to the talent shows. I made my debut, performing a song I wrote in tribute to the retirement community, with a harmonica accompaniment as a 60 year old! The Queens Theater at the former Worlds Fair site in NYC invited me to get on stage there and I was in my glory! As it says in the popular song of today, “never give up!”

  6. Joseph Dada says:

    I thank you Mahanta for this inspiring topic. It has guide me to a real life/spiritual lesson of life. Thank u for your divine love.

  7. Gabi says:

    We reine from a job, not from life. Retirement will bring new tasks. Thank you, Mahanta, for bringing up this subject.

  8. Karen says:

    Wow!!! Thank you so much Mahanta for your words of wisdom and reminders for us who have retired from jobs but not life. Thank you all for sharing your experiences, opinions, and feelings. Lisa’s story about her 88 year old father was truly inspiring. Yes Carolyn, life is an adventure. Thanks to Samson and Peter for their contribution too.
    May the Blessings be!

  9. Batouagbeu Oulai says:

    Thank you Mahanta. I’m juste retired. This lesson is for me.

  10. Joyce Smalling says:

    Thank you Mahanta. This article was meant for me to read. Baraka Bashad!!!

  11. Elske Evans e says:

    Thank you Wah Z you gave me the answers to my Questions.
    Love in Eck

  12. James I. Aguwa says:

    Thanks to Wah Z for discussing real life issues such as retirement. Living life spiritually should be a major practice at retirement.

  13. Mark Norman says:

    In a few days I will be officiating an ECK Light and Sound Service, “ECK Wisdom on Solving Problems”. This excerpt will be an important part of our discussion. And what could be better than singing HU to help us us find ways to accomplish learning how to survive and thrive in life. Thanks Z for these beautiful loving words of wisdom!

  14. Hillary H Onah says:

    I so much appreciate the wonderful advice there, it makes one to plan and prepare ahead of time for his retirement.
    Thanks a lot

  15. chris says:

    Love never retires.

  16. NWOSU EMEKA says:

    Thank u Mahanta for this reminder, awareness. I am somehow motivated.
    Emeka Nwosu

  17. AdemolaShote says:

    At 70 I have retired from my professional calling, to compliment the Spiritual Exercises of ECK I have taken up farming as a business hobby. And it keeps me fit physically because as I have something to attend to Spirtually, there is always something to attend to on the farm. Thank you Wah Z for this realization.

  18. Claude N BAH says:

    Thank you Mahanta. It’s the answer I was looking for.
    Claude N BAH

  19. Franca Udemezue Onwuzulike says:

    My gratitude goes to beautiful Z for these words of wisdom from most gorgeous heart.
    It is a reminder to me that SUGMAD knows no halting. The path of ECK is forever.

  20. Lorraine Buell says:

    Retired? I think I’m busier now than I have ever been–and loving it more! The ECK fills my life and I can’t help but give back.

  21. Samson Ehijinwa says:

    Am 72 years and I retired from the Military Service voluntarily in 2000. Today am better off, I still keep my regular roads walk and jogging 4-5 kilometers per week. I eat less carbohydrates, fish, no alcohol, with Noni juice evey morning. This has made me look as if I am 60 years. Regular Spiritual Exercises of ECK have enhanced my spiritual and physical out look. Thank you Mahanta for making me myself and in this Golden age here and now.

    Samson Ehijinwa, Nigeria

  22. Peter J Santsaver says:

    Just an old way of living, retire and start sitting? Why? NOW, I can do those things I use to dream about. Sometimes retirement is forced on you. I did consulting and after I reached 80 most of my contacts in industry were gone. No more contracts were coming to me. I decided to go into business for myself. Just doing what I liked. Travel and good meeting new friends also re-tired. After my bride translated that also had little comfort. So I went into research of Truth, study of the Eckankar writings and the translations of old old writings attributed to another that came to give Truth to the masses. Old methods for old times and states of consciousness. Ya know, I found the man the Greeks (Christos) was teaching was a version of Eckankar. We are today the same as those of old, looking for what is within. But we also have a Way-Shower in the body that is trying to get as many of us to understand the same principle. Know Thyself. Sri Harold can tell us where to look and once we’ve found IT help him as he tries to show others. With all the Love that is.

    -Peter J.

  23. Gene says:

    I did not retire but I refocused.

  24. Jackie Allen says:

    Thank you for putting words to what I have been thinking as I approach my 65th birthday! Here’s to not retiring from living!

  25. Rachel says:

    I am so blessed to be retired and to be a student of the ECK!! I thank God every day for the gifts of spirit which come into my life as an ECKist. This year I will be able to make that wonderful trip to the ECK seminar, the World Wide. I am very excited and grateful to come to the temple of ECK and to see the master in person. Thank you thank you thank you for the life of ECK!!

  26. Carolyn Wienand says:

    Thank you dear Mahanta, for your double message to those of us who are in retirement age. Yes, life is an adventure and we are survivors! Life here or in God’s other worlds are for learning and serving. I’m pretty sure we don’t get a permanent vacation in God’s heavens.

    I loved the message of the 88 yr old man rebuilding his home after fire destroyed it. Truly inspiring!

    Your 2nd message about nutrition is also very important for everyone.

    7 weeks ago, a 16yr old driver hit my car and hurt my knee. Chiropractic adjustments and cold lazer and a change in nutrition (less wheat & no sweets) are helping to heal knee. Veggies, fruit & protein!

    I just turned 68! I’ve worked at farms and owned retail businesses. I’ve also been a dancer for 63 yrs. I will be back in class next week. Nutrition, exercise & work are important to being vital while aging.

    Next weekend, our Vahana team, will share Eckankar information at a Spiritual Expo. I will be there!

    Thank you, Wah Z, for your protection, during the car accident. Thanks for all the guidance. “Love You”

  27. Rich Ugo says:

    With this story I can now prepare better for my retirement. This is pure gold for those who know the value. Baraka Bashad.

  28. Garnett Zamboni says:

    Thank you Mahanta for guiding me to read this article tonight. I needed this.
    When I retired from my professional position, I immediately went out and got not one but two part time jobs. It didn’t take long for me to realize that this was a gift to be cherished not dreaded. I found my way to volunteering for my community and haven’t looked back. My spiritual life has grown exponentially through service to others while learning new ways to increase vitality and friendships. At 71 years of age I have just begun a new yoga class that stretches me from my toes to my spiritual third eye. What we do on the outside also helps us grow spiritually. May the blessings of ECK love be yours.

  29. Linda Cooney says:

    I have been retired 5 years. Only now am I appreciating slowing up enough to breathe and to accept and to love every step of the way. I seem to want space to wind my way to the heart of every matter. Thank you to the ECK for providing me with the life I have in which to feel the love of God through the threads of life’s blessings.

  30. Nnenna says:

    Survival is a natural instinct no matter the age level, except maybe in an abnormal situation and a whole lot of things can contribute to that. If Soul stops learning, it stops growing, and if Soul does not grow, something terrible follows. As you are living, no matter the condition you find yourself, try and keep learning and keep serving in any capacity no matter how little, that is what keeps Soul growing instead of regarding in all the worlds, both spiritual and physical. Thank you Mahanta for this wonderful advice.

  31. Lisa Gerstner Boston says:

    My 88 year old father, who is a carpenter, just finished rebuilding his home of 60 nearly years, after it burned to the ground in a massive prairie fire. He had just retired at age 87, then this happened. He rebuilt his home stick by stick, brick by brick, working almost ever day for over a year. He put love in every detail. Younger men helped him with the heaviest work.

    My parents had lost almost everything. The fire, in 50 mile an hour winds, came so fast they drove through fire, getting out with just the shirts on their backs. The house and barn burned to the ground. Miracously, only the detached garage remained which was made of wood. It doubled as a workshop and had all my father’s carpentry tools in it. My dad took this as a divine sign that he was to rebuild his house.

    It reminds me of the story of Milerepa’s house. The spiritual student was instructed by his Master to keep rebuilding his house until only love remained. It took seven times.

    My dad has always been a positive guy, yet this process polished Soul even more. There is more love and patience in him than ever. And he has inspired many others in the process.

    • DJ says:

      I really truly love this story. The old man was very inspiring. I loved the way the rebuilding of his house turned him into a more loving and patient person. It shows how every experience in our lives shape us into a better beings if we learn the lesson in each of them.

  32. Stacie Schultz says:

    I’ve never imagined retirement, from a job maybe, but that’s it. As I have seen it, life is about change. That is the only permanent quality to life- Change. The key is staying open to where the ECK leads us in our next venue for service. This, I feel, is what life is all about anyway. My motto is “onward ho”, looking forward to the next adventure in service. And yes, love is a key ingredient to keep in ones’ heart as the changes move us forward.
    Thank you Sri Harold for this message. Life is filled with so much opportunity for growth, along with the fun that occurs along the way. A loving heart is the golden key.

  33. Bi Veronica Ngwa says:

    Rightly said! Retiring from job not from life. Life is like a river that keeps flowing. It only adjusts in volume or velocity depending on the seasons, but it keeps flowing. There is never a time it says when it would finally reach the ocean, it will stop flowing. Even if we were to retire from life here, where is it in the universes of God that life stops to exist? Soul lives for ever, so there is no retirement from life. We only have to accept change, adopt and adapt to it, for change is inevitable. Then we continue living with love.
    Thanks Wah Z for this wake-up call.

  34. Angela Starr says:

    I retired a few years ago. For me, loving and gracefully accepting love is my way of staying connected to the Light and Sound(spirit) of God (Sugmad). I have elderly parents I care for. 4 children to keep up with, and now 2 grandchildren on the way.! When I was younger, life moved so quickly that I didn’t have time to enjoy the silent beautiful unspoken communication with my family. Now as the worlwind eases, I carry on conversations with the Mahanta . . . And take the time to slow down and listen for a change! It’s a lot of fun 😉

  35. Moses Nduekhe says:

    Thanks very much Wah Z.
    I was actually wondering, where is this coming from. Looking further down, i saw that its taken from the book – Our Spiritual wake-up calls, Mahanta Transcripts, Book 15.
    Its indeed a wake-up call for us all. Retiring from active service its not tantamount to retiring from life.
    Its obviously a golden opportunity to learn new things in life regarding survival. Life goes on anyway.
    Life doesn’t stand still cos we have retired from work. Breathing is work itself. We age gracefully still working and growing.
    Thanks very much Wah Z for this reminder.

    Moses Nduekhe

  36. Peter Akpokodje says:

    I have seen in my short life here that those who often retire from jobs and from living often exit from life early. Though a general statement, it is just my observation. Life is for living. And you really need to be there to experience it. By there, I mean, in life, beyond retirement age and in service of love.
    Thanks Sri Harold for the growing tips.

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