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Replenish Both Body And Mind

“Of physiology from top to toe I sing

not physiognomy alone nor brain alone is worthy for the Muse, I say the form

complete is worthier far.”

~ Walt Whitman

Fact: the body manages to prolong its life by replacing its entire cell stock every 8-10 years on average.

So the biological construct is replenished steadily. What remains fairly constant is the mind i.e. the aggregate of experience in a human being. Its various elements always stay in place, defining a person’s existence.

A healthier and more lasting organism is one that accompanies its regular cellular reboot with a mental one

Why should the mind be so fixed? Does the body’s MO count for nothing? An organism would benefit enormously if it could shed its old self and emerge anew all around, in the same form, yet made up of fresh components, not just materially but also spiritually.

In other words, and in accordance with the body’s wisdom, it follows that a healthier and more lasting organism is one that accompanies its regular cellular reboot with a mental one.

Hence the need to never stay stuck in one mode of operations. Mutation is synonymous with adaptation, which is synonymous with survival. Change can be attained without compromising continuity by rebooting one’s state of mind.

You may think it strange, or gobbledygook, but we all do it. From the strangeness of infantileness and the magic of childhood we enter the fire of adolescence, then the rigors of young adulthood, and the maturity of marriage, or a serious job; then the wonder of having kids, or being free spirits; and the torture of our kids turning into adolescents; or the frustration of being unable to gather any moss as we roll down the hill; and the relaxation of our kids having grown up, so that one can claim one’s life back; or the wonder of devoting time to oneself, learning new things; and the zest of becoming a grandparent; or the beauty of being able to retire with not a care in the world.

Walt Whitman spoke of the unity of body and mind before science had established the full connection between them (image source: www.poetryfoundation.org)

All these stages in life help move individuals from one state of mind to another, keeping them fresh and excited about life, so that they may ably traverse the course of three generations, in cycles, before something inside them starts giving way irreversibly.

The trick during these cycles of mental metamorphosis is to streamline the rebooting process among all those involved. Lack of harmony on that level may result in a lag, which results in wasted time, which results in stuck minds, which result in fatigue, which result in aging. Get it right, with the the right crowd around you, and you may be around for a long time, enjoying every minute of it. Get it wrong and you may be around for a shorter time that feels like an eternity, hating every second of it. Or you may be lucky enough to snuff it early and spare yourself the torment.

The real trick, of course, is to decide how one reboots. With the help of others? Or on one’s own?

The more thorough the restructuring, the longer the run, and the greater the fun

Both approaches have merit. Yet they both present difficulties and complications. It depends on the person. It depends on the circumstances.

One thing is for certain. Both approaches lead to the same outcome: a replenishment of the mind, so that it may sustain the body that sustains it in turn. The more thorough the restructuring, the longer the run, and the greater the fun. Because the secret to youth is a fresh mind, within a refreshed body, of course.

I think it’s time I start hitting the gym again. And a trip down a dark alleyway doesn’t sound too bad either. That will surely rattle my yawns.

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