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The Importance of Age
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Post: #1
The Importance of Age
Quite often people will use some long amount of time to support their choices/situations, usually in regards to religion and otherkin-ness. Saying things like "I've felt a strong attraction to wolves ever since I was four" or "I've been studying Wicca ever since I was 14 and I'm 40 now".

Now I can see why age and/or length of time can be supportive. The older it is the more legitimate it seems, especially in regards to religion and culture. More ideas can accumulate during that amount of time, and also gives such ideas a chance to stabilize somewhat into a working system, or allow them to be analyze on a deeper scale. Plus, having an early starting point implies that you've had a lot of time to think and study whatever it is you're claiming.

But it can also be misleading. Even if you've felt an attraction to a certain path 10 years ago, have you actually spent 10 whole years learning about that path? Or was that simply a time where you started, then dropped off from it for the next 5 years, and then 4 years ago you finally picked it back up? If you figured out you were non-human when you were 7, did you actually look and analyze that feeling/idea ever since you were 7?

From what I've seen, people don't generally explain the time-length support in such detail when stating it, which makes me wonder how many are being (probably without realizing) misleading? I know I've done that before, simply stating that I've worked with Runes for 5 years and felt like a fox since I was 7. In truth, I've only really worked with runes for 4 years, with a year of not doing anything with them, and have only truly analyzed and studied my therioside for the past year, out of all those years I've (somewhat) known about it.

Which leads me to my question: How much of an emphasis do you place on time and ages in terms of supporting yours and others' statements (in the context of spirituality and otherkin)?
2009-02-19 3:10
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Post: #2
Re: The Importance of Age
I count from the moment of conscious awareness, and yes, contemplation, for my nature... and that is now 12 years. I did, however, show early signs from around age 6 to 7, but as I didn't really *think* about it then, it doesn't count in my tally. The only time I tend to trot it out is to show new 'kin that even a decade or more down the line, they'll *still* be questioning it. Or when a noob appears that acts like they know everything under the sun about being otherkin despite awakening 2 days ago... which thankfully doesn't happen often.

Otherwise, I every now and think "dang, this long already? And I still believe it? Good grief!" and that's about it. *shrugs*
2009-02-19 4:26
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Post: #3
Re: The Importance of Age
That's about how I look at it now. Every time I think I've learned something it brings up more questions. I've been at it 21 years, definitely not a phase to grow out of! But no, I didn't take it seriously for all that time. It stuck around in the back of my mind, but I didn't always actively think about it. Many times I shoved it in the closet and tried to ignore it.

I don't use the time spent as any kind of 'proof' other than proof that it's persistent.

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2009-02-19 4:33
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Post: #4
Re: The Importance of Age
There is a bad side to this though... For example, people who say "I've been studying paganism for 30 years, and this is how things are" and refuse to open their minds to other possibilities. While yes, age is good for wisdom... don't be so "wise" that you close out new thoughts. No matter how old you are, you may still be wrong. <!-- sSmile --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_e_smile.gif" alt=":)" title="Smile" /><!-- sSmile -->
2009-02-19 4:41
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Post: #5
Re: The Importance of Age
I don't really put much weight into my beliefs when it comes to time, especially since my story is "I started believing that demons were invading this plane of existance when I was 13, I'm eighteen now, and I've made a few dozen changes in my belief system since then."

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2009-02-19 4:54
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Post: #6
Re: The Importance of Age
More often than not, when people start throwing numbers of years around, it sends up big red warning flags inside my head. It makes 'em look less credible. Especially because it usually comes in with a sort of "I know I'm right cause I spent X years researching it!".
I've spent years working on learning to comprehend myself but I'm not about to go "Oh yea, I'm righter than you are cause I've been doing it longer!!" which is the common context of the whole years thing.

I do believe that the more time we spend on getting to know ourselves and understand ourselves the better.

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2009-02-19 12:31
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Post: #7
Re: The Importance of Age
I've grown up with people older and "wiser" than me telling me what's right and wrong, and their ideas do not work for me and never have. Age is not important; knowing yourself is. Some people take a long time to know themselves while others understand instantly.

However, if someone with more experience in a certain matter is willing to explain WHY they are right or this works or whatever, I'm happy to listen and try to give concideration to their views.

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2009-02-19 23:44
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Post: #8
Re: The Importance of Age
The advantage of being older, in my opinion, is that it allows behavioural patterns to be revealed. Generally the older someone is, the more experiences they have had, and so more opportunity to see how they act or react in different situations. This means that it may be easier for an older person to detect whether or not they have a belief simply as a coping mechanism, or as a reaction to adversity, because they have a greater store of examples. However, age does not indicate one's level of introspection. A younger person may be more insightful and reflective, than an older person.

Quote:I don't use the time spent as any kind of 'proof' other than proof that it's persistent.


That's how I feel about it, too. My age has given me the opportunity to examine why, on some occasions, I ran away from exploring my kin self and why it persists. It's not my age that justifies my beliefs, but the journey I have taken over those years and the patterns that I have seen in it.
2009-02-21 13:51
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Post: #9
Re: The Importance of Age
I preffer better arguments than "I'm 40 years old." or "I've studied myself for xx years."

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2009-03-02 8:57
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Post: #10
Re: The Importance of Age
Miniar Wrote:More often than not, when people start throwing numbers of years around, it sends up big red warning flags inside my head. It makes 'em look less credible. Especially because it usually comes in with a sort of "I know I'm right cause I spent X years researching it!".
I've spent years working on learning to comprehend myself but I'm not about to go "Oh yea, I'm righter than you are cause I've been doing it longer!!" which is the common context of the whole years thing.

I do believe that the more time we spend on getting to know ourselves and understand ourselves the better.

This unless I'm the one who inquired about the age thing. But I usually don't...
2009-03-02 9:13
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