Aging as problem and as mystery

David Barnard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


As human beings we live our lives simultaneously in two realms: the realm of problems, and the realm of mysteries. Each of these realms is associated with a different way of seeing, interpreting, and responding to the phenomena we encounter and experience in our lives, including the phenomenon of aging. This essay elaborates on the distinction between problems and mysteries as realms of thinking, feeling, and acting in the world, and applies this distinction to three aspects of the care of the elderly: delaying the aging process, dementia, and managing dying.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)464-477
Number of pages14
JournalPerspectives in Biology and Medicine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2017


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health Policy
  • History and Philosophy of Science

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