Help and advice for Retirement Years

Socrates was when asked by a pupil, this question: "What kind of folks shall we be when we reach Elysium?"

Along with the answer was this: "We shall be the identical kind of folks that we were here." ?"

If there is a life following this, we're preparing for it now, just as I am to-day preparing for my life to-morrow.

What kind of a man shall I be to-morrow?

If I am miserable to-day, it can be not within the round of probabilities that I shall be supremely happy to-morrow. Life is really a preparation for the future; and also the finest preparation for the future would be to live as if there had been none.

We're preparing all of the time for old age.

Within the play of _Ivan the Terrible_, the interest centers around 1 man, the Czar Ivan. If anybody but Richard Mansfield played the part, there would be absolutely nothing in it.

Man is the result of cause and impact, along with the causes are to a degree in our hands. Life can be a fluid, and well has it been called the stream of life--we are going, flowing somewhere.

Babyhood has no monopoly on the tantrum.

Lear, the troublesome, Lear to whose limber tongue there was constantly leaping words unprintable and names of tar, deserves no soft pity at our hands. "Oh, how sharper than a serpent's tooth it can be to have a thankless child," he cries.

There's some thing really as poor as a thankless child, and that is a thankless parent--an irate, irascible parent who possesses an underground vocabulary along with a disposition to use it.

The false note in Lear lies in giving to him a daughter like Cordelia.

Mansfield's _Ivan_ is terrible. The Czar just isn't old in years--not over seventy--but you are able to see that Death is sniffing close upon his track.

He can be a victim of amour senilis, and right here if Mansfield took one step a lot more his realism would be appalling, but he stops in time and suggests what he dares not express. This tottering, doddering, slobbering, sniffling old man is in love--he is about to wed a young, beautiful girl. The folks about _Ivan_ are in mortal terror of him, for he is still the absolute monarch--he has the power to promote or disgrace, to take their lives or let them go no cost. He is intensely religious and affects the robe and cowl of a priest. Around his neck hangs the crucifix. If any person is talking to him he looks the other way, slips down until his shoulders occupy the throne, scratches his leg, and keeps up a running comment of insult--"Aye," "Oh," "Of course," "Certainly," "Ugh," "Listen to him now!" There is a comedy side to all this which relieves the tragedy and keeps the play from becoming disgusting. Glimpses of _Ivan's_ past are given in his jerky confessions--he is probably the most miserable and unhappy of men, and you behold that he is reaping as he has sown.

All his life he has been preparing for this.

Where does _Ivan the Terrible_ go when Death closes his eyes?

But this I believe: No confessional can absolve him--no priest rewards him--no God forgive him. The playwright does not say so, Mansfield does not say so, but this is the lesson: Hate can be a poison--wrath is a toxin--sensuality leads to death--clutching selfishness is really a lighting of the fires of hell. Should you be ever absolved, you should absolve your self, for no one else can.

We often hear of the beauties of old age, but the only old age which is stunning is the 1 the man has long been preparing for by living a lovely life. There may well be a substitute somewhere inside the world for Great Nature, but I don't know where it can be found.

The secret of salvation is this: Maintain Sweet.

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