"Cicero’s On Old age” a philosophical text

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In his philosophic text "Cicero's On Old Age" contrasts old age views with human youth and childhood. Age and death are the main theme of the text. In addition to succinct and persuasive views, Cicero supports his points satisfactorily with credible and appealing ideas. He compares the aging era to death in the document. With reference to Dovey's new conception of what the old age is. The two definitions reflect the same theories of justification behind aging and death. Dovey present a universal idea from what people believe in that old age period is accompanied by hardship and instability in health care conditions. In Cicero’s text, he presents his abilities and ambitions while at tender age period but express his inevitability in old age period. Though the two concepts express same theme, Cicero accepts the fundamental transition of one’s life, unlike Dovey. Cicero has a great feeling about old age and life transition and defends the old age people given that there are a lot of perceptions. Throughout the text, Cicero purported his arguments in philosophical reasoning to respond and counter the perception that people have behind aging. He considers the old age as the disadvantaged members of the society as compared to the youthful stage. In light of the reading, the modern world society also presents the same perception of old age and death. According to the modern society’s beliefs and perceptions, when you approach an old age, you become incapacitated and disadvantaged in the society. Most people seem to fear death and logically relate old age to death. There is a close connection between Cicero’s On Old age and Dovey’s modern ideas in “What Old Age Is Really Like as they have same arguments and perception towards old age and death. Like the modern society, Cicero argues that as one approaches old age, they become displeased and that they approach their death.

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In my understanding of the arguments and thoughts through the readings, the ideas are appealing since they speak of the truly modern world. Unlike youthful stage, old age people have less strength and low abilities. Perhaps they no longer require more strength, unlike the youths who are in their active period. I agree with Dovey’s modern ideas in “What Old Age Is Really Like” that old age period is a perplexing time to imagine in one’s life (Dovey, n.p). Cicero also supports the argument that at old age, one does not have to be strong as the youths. He depicts his argument through appealing ideas and reasoning. He provides an example through comparing his experience of youthful stage and old age stage. Through his comparison, it is evident that he deserved to be strong as a bull elephant as compared to his current old age stage. Modern people’s perception also hold the same argument through Dovey; he argues that old age is a disgusting stage that people become weak and exhausted. Also, they acknowledge that people should utilize their energies in youthful stage since they will become weaker at old age. He adds that one should not wish to be youth throughout his/her life due to transition. The modern ideas are also quenched as it is evident that people become weaker as they become older. As such, one should use the energy and capabilities throughout life period to full potential and avoid regrets in life. To quote the words of Cicero, “Use whatever you have… enjoy the blessing of strength while you have it and do not bewail it when it is gone” (Cicero, p.37), this supports that capabilities of human being vary throughout the lifetime.

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Also, modern ideas perceive the argument that old age period deprives people their full physical potential and pleasure. Through Dovey’s research, there are various negative benchmarks behind the old age. As such, old age is associated with loss of memory, illness, loss of sexual activeness and physical weakness. However, Cicero challenges this argument by supporting that eating and drinking is also a way of sensual pleasure. This is a contrary to the negative benchmark by Dovey. He believes that eating and drinking together grants him more fun and thus a sensual pleasure (Cicero, p.53). Nevertheless, he supports the idea that no one needs sexual pleasure at old age period, unlike the youthful stage. Conclusively, this is the reason why people should utilize the sensation pleasure at the youthful stage.

 

Works Cited

Cicero.On Old Age.2017, Retrieved from:http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/e/roman/texts/cicero/cato_maiorde_senectute/text*.html
Dovey, C. What Old Age Is Really Like, 2015. Retrieved from: https://www.newyorker.com/culture/ cultural-comment/what-old-age-is-really-like

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