AgeSong CEO Speaks on Spiritual Purpose of Aging

[This post was updated October 9th, 2015 to include the videos of the workshop and exercise.]

AgeSong CEO and Founder, Dr Nader Shabahangi presents a workshop on the “Spiritual Purpose of Aging” to the Openhouse SF Community on August 27th, 2015. This interactive group workshop was facilitated by Chaplain Renee and hosted by Openhouse SF in partnership with the Ministry of Presence Institute.

AgeSong CEO Speaks on Spiritual Purpose of Aging

Video is now available of the workshop where Nader Shabahangi, the AgeSong CEO, interacts with the Openhouse SF Community the on Spiritual Purpose of Aging
Tune in and watch the Spiritual Purpose of Aging Workshop video created by AgeSong.

Watch the Spiritual Purpose of Aging Workshop Exercise video here. This is the companion video to the Workshop video.

Find out More!

Read more stories  about Aging here.

Explore more videos in the AgeSong Video Library

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 5.53.47 PM

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 5.54.07 PMScreen Shot 2015-08-04 at 6.03.03 PM

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 6.03.15 PM

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 6.06.33 PM

A Conversation Series Reduce the worry and anxiety. Relax with AgeSong.

AgeSong Conversation Series
Life’s journey is a roller coaster of moments, growth, and appreciation. AgeSong is delighted to present a series of conversation topics to stimulate discussion of thought-provoking ideas among those who are interested in tailoring the second half of their life to their personal preferences. Participate, collaborate, and network.

Is there a topic, event, or experience about which you would like to share or learn more?
The AgeSong team is always looking for new inspirational ideas that help us live life with more awareness and joy. If you would like to share an idea or have a burning question related to the aging process, please email

Each event will provide the opportunity to join the conversation, learn something new, and share ideas. For more information visit You may also contact Jennifer J. Lopez at or (650)380-5591.

June 6, 2015
Why does your neighborhood matter? The influence your community has on your health. More Information
AgeSong WoodPark, 3121 Fruitvale Ave., Oakland, CA 94602
RSVP June 6th Event 2pm to 5pm

July 27, 2015
San Francisco is changing. Are you keeping up? Do you want to?
AgeSong University, 350 University St., San Francisco, CA 94134

August 15, 2015
Music and health. Ideas on how to have more music in your life.
AgeSong Hayes Valley, 601 Laguna St., San Francisco, CA 94102

September 12, 2015
What’s money got to do with it? Understanding your attitude towards money.
AgeSong WoodPark, 3121 Fruitvale Ave., Oakland, CA 94602

October 17, 2015
Discover your own Picasso. How to bring art back into your life.
AgeSong University, 350 University St., San Francisco, CA 94134

November 7, 2015
Local organic, non-GMO, carbon free, etc. What does the food craze have to do with me?
AgeSong Laguna Grove, 624 Laguna St., San Francisco, CA 94102

Reports or Rebellion: Aging at a Crossroads

Matt Perry, author of an article on called “Reports or Rebellion: Aging at a Crossroads” highlights AgeSong for it’s positive approach in elder care.

What we need is action, immediately and on multiple fronts. Brown should support the Aging Czar that Liu and Berg recommend, and that person should consult some of the progressive Californians who are dedicating their lives to solving the problems that beset older adults. Among them:


— Nader Shabahangi, who treats his residents as wise elders in his three AgeSong communities in San Francisco.


Reports or Rebellion: Aging at a Crossroads
by Matt Perry

In January, Senator Carol Liu’s office released a powerful, comprehensive report about the crisis of aging services in our state…

…Spawned by the intelligence and passion of former legislator Patty Berg – Liu’s lead consultant and the report’s true author – it includes dozens of recommendations for reform, including a state Aging Czar.

“A Shattered System” is impressive on many levels and a must-read for all state legislators and anyone who cares about older adults. The result of Liu’s year-long Select Committee on Aging and Long-Term Care, it’s an indictment of the way the state supports and cares for its aging population, or, really, the way it does neither…

The complete article can be read here.

AgeSong Guru Project with visiting guests Dr. Allen Power & Dr. Richard Taylor

The AgeSong Guru Project
The AgeSong Guru Project is a one-year initiative that will focus on comprehensive care partnerships with elders to understand need-driven behaviors and minimize risky use of psychotropic medication.  To complete this project AgeSong has engaged in a partnership with Psychiatrist and Pacific Institute board member Dr. Richard Patel, Geriatrician Dr. Allen Power, and Psychologist Dr. Richard Taylor.

AgeSong Visiting Guests Dr. Allen Power & Dr. Richard Taylor
Psychiatrist and Pacific Institute board member Dr. Richard Patel welcomes geriatrician Dr. Allen Power (Dementia Beyond Drugs) and psychologist Dr. Richard Taylor (Alzheimer’s from the Inside Out) to San Francisco and Oakland for a series of lectures, discussions, and workshops inspired by the wisdom in changes associated with aging and forgetting. Dr. Taylor has been living with forgetfulness (diagnosed dementia) for over ten years. He will give the audience a revealing account of his experience. Beyond Labeling: Exploring the Elephant is a forum for sharing the vision of the AgeSong Guru Project and celebrating the mystery and richness of being human.

Biomedical Convention

Dr. Power, Dr. Taylor, with Dr. Patel
Tuesday, February 17th, 11:30am – 1:00pm
AgeSong Laguna Grove, Laguna Grove Terrace
624 Laguna Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Guru Launch Gala

Dr. Power, Dr. Taylor, with Dr. Shabahangi
Friday, February 20th, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
AgeSong University, University Chapel
350 University Street, San Francisco, CA 94134 guru


Find out More!

Read more stories about the AgeSong Guru Project


AgeSong Festival of Lights, Dec 2nd – 4th

Members of the AgeSong communities throughout the SF Bay Area are joining with staff to plan AgeSong’s annual “Festival of Lights,” honoring the multicultural holiday traditions of members of the AgeSong communities. Family and friends are invited to participate in this special occasion with elders, staff, gerowellness interns, and volunteers. Each tradition is celebrated with music, song, symbols, discussion, food, and, of course, lighting of the lights.

  • WoodPark, Tuesday December 2, 2014
  • Pacific Institute, Wednesday, December 3, 2014
  • AgeSong University, Thursday, December 4, 2014

Towards an Elders Academy – A Future Vision

The role of the elder was once the most revered role in our human communities. Eldership as a role and position within a human community started within the tribal traditions. There we find an emphasis on elders as guides and leaders. This indicates that they are experienced and wise and are fit to lead the tribe and teach the young. Elders also resolve social concerns and are expected to make final decisions about the direction communities will take on the many social and individual issues we humans must face.

Today, however, elders are scarcely available to guide and initiate the young and lead our communities to make wise decisions. There is an absence of elders also because the old have not been given the skills and ability to be elders. Moreover, in the last few centuries, the status of the elderly as respected members of their societies has declined.

Paralleling this decline has been a diminution of the elders’ role in their respective communities. We need to train elders if we want to help individuals living in our communities and societies with the important tasks of supporting and guiding the younger in age and experience. For being older does not make an elder. The qualities of eldership must be acquired through much training, learning and practice. If we recall, for example, how monks in the various spiritual traditions are initiated over many years into becoming a respected member of their communities, then we have a glimpse of what it will take for an older person to grow into becoming an elder.

There are a few organizations in the United States that try to implement this vision of eldership into practice. Notably the Eden Alternative programs (, AgeSong (, AgeSong Institute (, and Mather Lifeways ( are at the forefront of making this change.  I do hope that other individuals, organizations and corporations will swiftly follow their example.

For it is our elders, their life experience, skill, knowledge and wisdom that will help usher in a new era of understanding how we can live in harmony with planet and people. And it is our elders who, together with the young, will lead the way to help establish a sustainable way of life, both in terms of matter and spirit.

The stakes are higher than one might think. The value set based on youth also brings with it an attitude and approach to life that must be balanced by the wisdom and experience of age. Though this seems obvious at first glance, the divide between the generations is widening, not decreasing. Modern technologies, their apparent wizardry and standing in the world as benchmarks of civilization, are advancing to such a degree and speed that a counter movement has already begun to take hold. Elders need to be infused in the decision-making processes in the world. Their experience and natural attitude towards sustainability is needed to help protect and guide people and planet.



Peace, Love and Understanding at WoodPark

The Sixties were a time of Love, Peace and Freedom to Be!!! On September 10th AgeSong WoodPark’s Residents, Staff and Volunteers brought back the memories of that era with their costumes, music and dance.
We enjoyed the Motown tunes by Chris Clark who was joined by our resident pianist and blues aficionado John Cain.  Hippies, Mods and the fashion of the sixties were well represented by the fun community at WoodPark.

EHI —The Future of Psychotherapy: COLLOQUIUM


How do we train developing therapists and how do we continue to deepen our practice throughout the years?

This colloquium will encourage participants to share their ideas about the vital skills and attitudes that a therapist in training needs to learn and develop, and with regard to the practicing therapist, which skills and attitudes will not only enrich and deepen clinical work but also perhaps impact society in general.

We hope that our discussions and dialogue will contribute to the profession of psychotherapy by stimulating clinicians, educators, trainers, schools, and licensing agencies to reflect upon the necessary components of effective psychotherapy.

Thank you for your interest and we hope to see you at this year’s EHI “The Future of Psychotherapy” Colloquium.

Sincerely, Nader Shabahangi, EHI President & Conference Coordinator Mary Madrigal, EHI Board Member & Conference Coordinator

DATE: November 15, 2014   –– 10:00am – 5:00pm

LOCATION: AgeSong, 624 Laguna Street, SF, CA 94102

COST: $75

CEU 4 CEU’s available for BBS (RNs, MFTs & LCSWs) & Psychologists

REGISTER ONLINE: EHI Colloquium Registration


Discussions & Dialogue about Effective E-H Psychotherapeutic Practices


Open to Educators, Clinicians, Trainers, Schools & Practicing Therapists!


EHI Event Updates:

Speaker Series with Allen Power and Nader Shabahangi

Speaker Series: Allen Power, MD, and Nader Shabahangi, PhD
Dementia Beyond Disease:
Forgetting The Nonessential
The Depth of Eldership
Dementia Beyond Disease:
Forgetting The Nonessential

September 11, 2014 I 9am-11am

AgeSong WoodPark

3121 Fruitvale Ave, Oakland, CA 94602

Please join us for a light breakfast reception.

September 11, 2014 I 5pm-7pm

AgeSong University

350 University St., San Francisco, CA 94134

Please join us for a light evening reception afterwards.

The Depth of Eldership

September 11, 2014 I 12pm-2pm

AgeSong WoodPark

3121 Fruitvale Ave, Oakland 94602

September 12, 2014 I 2pm-4pm

AgeSong Laguna Grove

624 Laguna Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Please RSVP at 415.235.9301


Earn 2 CEUs

for RCFE, LCSW, MFT, RN, and CNA

Dementia Beyond Disease: Forgetting the Nonessential” offers all CEUs including
the rcfe. “The Depth of Eldership” offers all CEUs EXCEPT RCFE
(Provider #2000379-740-2; Course # Pending), LCSW & MFT (Provider PCE 5253), RN (Provider #15524), Certified Nurse Assistant CNA #6872.

©2014 Pacific Institute * 4608 * All Rights Reserved.
RCFE# Laguna Grove 385600372, Hayes Valley 385600373,
AgeSong University 385600402, WoodPark 019200514

Our New Community: AgeSong University

After several months of negotiations, Agesong was able to save “University Mound Ladies Home” from closure. With the creation of AgeSong University, this historic site, serving elders for over 125 years, will continue to promote Elder Care Education, as well as embracing the role of elders as wisdom keepers and the AgeSong Vision.


Eldership refers to the attitude of a person who has qualities of an elder. These qualities are of ageless nature, have endured the test of time. As such, they provide our culture with a compass, a guide to life and living. It is the vision of AgeSong to promote such eldership and help re-establish its role in our societies.


Re-establishing the role of the elder in society necessitates changing perceptions of aging. Rather than understanding the aging process as a decline in human abilities, AgeSong promotes a view that understands aging as affording us the ability to mature, to become more fully and truly human. Aging is understood as a positive attribute to living, as a deepening of our awareness of life, of meaning and purpose.

The original benefactor of this historic site, James Lick, was among the wealthiest men in California and upon his death in 1876, he was persuaded to leave a substantial portion of his wealth to a variety of social and scientific causes, including $700,000 to establish the Lick Observatory and $100,000 to establish a home in San Francisco for “the aged and needy ladies who have no resources of their own”.

Everyone throughout AgeSong welcomes the residents, family members, and care partners at AgeSong University!