What’s in a number? This age-old question gets unexpected answers in a newly published book, Wisdom of Age, by Jeff Rubin.
The book grew out of Rubin’s personal observations and professional concerns regarding age discrimination, a general lack of respect for elders, and society’s apparent unwillingness to consider the consequences of not altering its behavior. This has become an increasing concern to baby boomers and others who will desire to remain active, relevant, and engaged.
Rubin’s own experiences led him to believe that many people are in denial about their own aging and tend to marginalize others considered to have reached a “certain age.” He notes that today’s prevailing—and often ambiguous—ideas about defining age are not new. So, how old is “old?” Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., the noted U.S. Supreme Court Justice who lived to age 93, said, “Old age is always fifteen years older than I am.”
Given society’s lack of a hard and fast rule to define old age, Rubin’s book asks what makes anyone appear “old” in the eyes of some people and not in the eyes of others. Further, how will society treat people when that day comes that we truly are a “certain age?”
Wisdom of Age reflects Rubin’s dedicated fight against ageism and the wide-spread misperception that one number—or any number—should define an individual’s value and self-worth, or that it should exclude them from remaining active, relevant, and engaged. Instead, Wisdom of Age offers insights of more than 500 people age 5 to 103 and challenges readers to consider that anyone can think, dream, and influence the world around them regardless of their ability or age. Rubin describes his book as “a collection of wisdom from one generation to another…” that exposes readers to the wisdom available to everyone all along life’s continuum by seeing the world through the eye of that beholder.
Rubin’s professional career has been dedicated to civic improvement and community engagement. “I believe that every individual has the right to be heard and the power to make a difference regardless of ability or age, especially when quality-of-life decisions are being made,” Rubin says.
A champion for inclusion and collaboration, Rubin has been acknowledged with Editor and Publisher’s top award for community service while marketing and directing several community newspapers. He also has been recognized by his peers for leading and advancing older adult and intergenerational programs at the local, state, and national levels. Rubin currently serves as a member of the Kentucky Institute on Aging, an advisory body to the Department of Aging and Independent Living and hosts a radio talk show on contemporary community issues. A contributing columnist to regional print and on-line media, Rubin also shares a consulting practice with his wife in their community.
Wisdom of Age is getting the attention of teachers and educational administrators, health professionals, religious leaders, and business executives who have hailed it for its insightfulness. Their comments call the book “a powerful witness to our perceptions and misperceptions of the aging process;” “A fine book… you don’t have to live many years to be wise;” “I could see this as someone’s personal favorite. It provides opportunity for the reader to be engaged on so many levels;” “A 30-minute read, but a several months journey.”
Wisdom of Age is available through retailers, such as Amazon.com.
In addition to the print edition, Wisdom of Age offers interactive components through its website. Readers can access a survey of brief questions to provide additional insights and perceptions about age at: http://wisdomofage.net/book/ by Jeff Rubin
What Others Are Saying About Wisdom of Age
“This compendium of wisdom is local and immediate. Rubin’s work reveals that peace-of-heart and meaning is something everyone around us searches for, and the paths they have found are ones we can walk too. All we need to do is listen.”
Chris Green, Director
Loyal Jones Appalachian Center
“I think this book can be a powerful witness to our perceptions and misperceptions of the aging process. The variety of opinions give a lot to chew on and think through. The testimony from children and adults (and older adults) gives the matter depth. The book is a 30-minute read, but could be a several months journey.”
Rabbi Marc Aaron Kline, J.D.
Monmouth Reform Temple
Tinton Falls, New Jersey
“I loved reading it. I loved the variety of ages and the complexity of answers in such brief statements. I was enamored by the depth of our students’ comments at such early ages (some six and seven-year olds, along with several 13 and 14-year olds really blew me away with their maturity!). I could see this as someone’s personal favorite. It provides opportunity for the reader to be engaged on so many levels.”
Elmer Thomas, Superintendent
Madison County Schools
“Jeff Rubin has captured in this work a glimpse at the threads of wisdom that weave the fabric of our lives – some snippets, some emotions and some insights from across the spectrum of ages that make up our collective human experience. Many will benefit from reading it; most who do will likely share it with others.”
Keith R. Knapp, PhD, CNHA, CNA
Chair, Department of Health Services and Senior Living Leadership
About the Author
Description generated with very high confidence Jeff Rubin is a civic improvement, community engagement, and communications professional who believes that every individual has the right to be heard and the power to make a difference regardless of their ability or age. He believes this to be especially true if there are decisions being made that impact the quality of any individual’s life. A champion of inclusion and collaboration, he sees both as essential components in bringing about productive and effective change.
Jeff has been acknowledged for his efforts over the years, winning Editor and Publisher’s top award for community service while marketing and directing several community newspapers, and later being recognized by his peers for leading and advancing older adult and intergenerational programs at the local, state, and national levels.
More recently, Jeff was appointed by the previous Kentucky Governor, Steve Beshear, to serve as a member of the Kentucky Institute on Aging, an advisory body to the Department of Aging and Independent Living. In addition, he hosts a radio talk show on contemporary community issues, and is a contributing columnist to print and online media.
Jeff has a daughter, Sarina, age 21, who attends college at the University of Oregon. He shares a consulting practice with his wife, Denise, in Berea, Kentucky where they live with their dog, Toby.