Yesterday WWJ reported a study, saying older people have less stress. The findings relayed older people realize the "end of time" is coming and the things they once worried over during their younger years, just don't matter so much anymore.
Similarly, in a Developmental Psychology class I took last semester, there are findings that older people get less involved in sticky situations.
They also sleep less, however they need the same food intake to function.
By norm, memory dulls a little. For those who have dementia, and Alzheimer's disease, which cannot be confirmed until a person passes away and an autopsy reveals certain areas of the brain that change during the course of the illness, memory dulls a lot. Parts of life wash away.
So what does this all mean?
God has given elderly people a chance to come to consensus with their whole lives.
A lot of people hit "midlife crisis" in their 40s.
Midlife crisis hasn't been confirmed to exist through psychology. Still many claim to go through it.
Muhammad (sws) had a midlife crisis
The Prophet Muhammad sws, the last Prophet in Islam went through a phase when he was 40 years old.
He was living the life with a wealthy wife and four healthy children. He needed something more. Something spiritual.
During the course of the year he'd often retreat to Mount Hira in Mecca to reflect for days at a time.
He never believed in the idols Arabia worshipped at the time. He was not a pagan. He believed in a central God.
He went to Mount Hira, this time for a month, to really figure himself out. It was his longest retreat yet.
While in the cave, he was visited by Angel Gibrael, the angel that spoke to all Prophets. Angel Gabrael ordered Muhammad to read, three times. Muhammad was illiterate. The Angel squeezed him to prove it was not just a dream.
"Read in the name of your Lord who Created You out of a blood clot (96)," Angel Gibrael said to Muhammad.
Miraculously Muhammad repeated him.
At the time Arabia was 90 percent of an oral culture. Most people didn't know how to read but those who knew poetry were adored. The Quran was beautiful like poetry but divine like only which the Holy books could be.
Gibreal professed Muhammad as a Prophet. He didn't believe it. His life changed, as the last Prophet of Islam.
So what does this all mean?
We do go through some kind of "reflective period" when we are in our 20s, and 40s. Hence, we make smarter choices afterward (or not).
The 40-year mark
In Islam, year 40 marks a couple of things:
a. We are no longer dependent on our parents, our parents are dependent on us.
b. We have fulfilled our youth lives, which we will be questioned about before much of other things on the Day of Judgment.
c. We are closer to the end, as science and psychology suggests, and need to change our lives before the chance is gone.
According to Dr. Mehmet Oz from the Dr. Oz Show, older people have fewer tears, which keeps their eyes moisturized. Less sadness?
When your older, dry away those tears and repent. God has given us ample opportunities to better ourselves.
The need for the same amount of food (energy), less sleep, same food, less stress, less involvement in sticky situations...it all adds up to something.
It adds up to a wonderful opportunity to spend time in prayer, care less about worldly materialistic things and devote time in repentance, in the name of the last days.
He has prepares us mentally, emotionally and whole-heatedly for death - if we're not afraid of it that is - and gives us to chance to say sorry to Him and to others before what Dylan Thomas would call, "going gentle into that good night."
God watches over us in mysterious ways.