Recognition Rites

A New Vision of Aging, Fruitful Aging with Dr. Tom Pinkson | www.DrTomPinkson.comIt is time our senior citizens enjoy a position of respect and reverence that shows a cultural appreciation and valuation of their accomplishments and gifts of wisdom.

Recognition Rites is a program Dr. Pinkson created to:

  1. Provide seniors practical tools with which to address the emotional and spiritual challenges of growing older.
  2. Create a sacred ceremony honoring the journey and process of conscious aging to open the heart to the transformational and healing power of love.


Step One: A Series of Individual Guided Sessions To Find Your Legacy

Participants are led through a structured process of fourteen reflective questions by which to identify, gather and harvest the wisdom teachings of the participant’s life. Questions entail finding your bearings, appraising your relationship to your self, examining the beliefs, values and goals that guide your life, your coping strategies, tracing its crucial turning points and exploring your relationship with the significant other who have journeyed with you.

These questions also address any unresolved relationships/situations in a healing context learning how to use the mind to open and heal the heart for inner peace and loving relationships, thereby increasing self-esteem and promoting mental and physical well being.

Sessions take place in Dr. Pinkson’s office, or at your home. They help you realize your “Gifts of Being”  to share with others in a meaningful and lasting legacy This enables you to create and affirm a new and meaningful vision of your future as a contributor to social and cultural well being benefiting younger generations.

Step Two: A Ceremonial Event Honoring and Celebrating the Participant’s Life.

Evolving from the reflection questions you engage your creativity for late-life reinvention developing a dramatic way of introducing your new identity and your gifts through a presentation in a public setting – a rite of passage crossing the threshold into conscious aging via a ceremonial act of power offered to invited guests from various areas of the honorees’ life.

Guests to the Recognition Rite ceremony are invited to share how knowing the participant has impacted their lives. This way you get to hear what otherwise might only be shared at a future memorial service when you are not there to hear it.

The second part of the Celebration is where you present your new identity and share your gifts in an experiential manner – poetry, song, music, a ritual, a theatre piece, etc., something you have developed in session with Dr. Pinkson…something that takes you beyond your comfort zone into an “Act of Power’ that dramatically delivers the message that you are crossing the threshold of longevity with the intention to age consciously, gracefully, powerfully and meaningfully. This is a community event that enriches and enlivens all with new possibilities of their own conscious aging.

Every Recognition Rite is tailored to the uniqueness of your gender, values and belief system utilizing your favorite music, symbols, art, colors and key life themes, thereby helping you remember that the content of your Being is more important and defines more of who you truly are than the changing form of your physical body.

Step Three: Follow-up Integration Session – Helping the honoree use the experience to chart a course for their future building on their Gifts and feedback they have received from their guests.


  • Understanding the program’s underlying motivation and background, its theory, delivery process and its results.
  • An enhanced sense of self-esteem and worth.
  • A vision and socially integrative purpose for one’s future.
  • Strengthened coping capacities for addressing loss.
  • Knowing how to develop a meaningful transitional rite of passage and celebratory event into aging consciously, skillfully and gracefully conducted before one’s selected community.
  • Realization that you possess “Wisdom Gifts of Being” to share with others that meaningfully address needs in the community.
  • A fortified spirituality which increasing evidence indicates is one of the best tools in facing the very real challenges of aging.
  • Learning how to use your mind to create a sense of healing inner peace while opening the heart to the transformational healing power of love.
  • Understanding that aging can be a growth-full adventure, a time of inner exploration and development leading to a new sense of who and what you really are and why you are here.
  • A chance to tell your story – the sacred narrative of your life – and be heard in an inter-generation setting where the wisdom teachings of your life are passed on to the next generation.

The entire event is filmed, edited and made into a DVD for the Honoree, along with a beautiful color, hard-bound Memory Book, which incorporates photos of the evening as well as old ones of the person’s choice – events, friends, relatives, pets, anyone or anything deemed significant – a wonderful keepsake for generations to come.


Recognition Rites bring people of diverse background and belief systems together for an event that helps break down barriers of separation between races, ages, religions and social class.

They build community. They foster greater appreciation of diversity, of older people, of how love and appreciation enrich all our lives. Recognition Rites serve as a seed and stimulus for others in attendance to create celebrations for meaningful elders in their own lives. The Good Medicine spreads through the hearts of people touched by what they have experienced.

Find out how to participate in Recognition Rites here. Read testimonials here.


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