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Liess, Kathrin (2012): »Jung bin ich gewesen und alt geworden«. Lebenszeit und Alter in den Psalmen. In: Fitzon, Thorsten; Linden, Sandra; Liess, Kathrin; Elm, Dorothee (eds.) : Alterszäsuren. Zeit und Lebensalter in Literatur, Theologie und Geschichte. Herders biblische Studien, Berlin; Boston: De Gruyter. pp. 131-170
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Abstract

This chapter is concerned with the theme of human life and aging in the Psalms, with a focus on Ps 71, 90, and 92. On a synchronic textual level, Ps 90-92 can be read as a discourse over transience, human life, and agmg: a lament over human transience (Ps 90) culmrnates in a song of thanks (Ps 92) promismg vitahty continurng into old age. With motifs of Vegetation, a contrastive arc is here formed around Ps 90-92: human mortahty is compared with the withering of grass (Ps 90:5-6), old age with the tall and fruitful tree in the Temple (Ps 92:13-16). For its part, Ps 71 considers the human life cycle in its entirety, which is to say birth, childhood, youth, and old age, tyrng these phases to a tense dynamic of closeness to and distance from God. With a starting point in the basic idea at work in psalmic anthropology, a »constellative« idea of the person, the process of human agmg can be described on three levels: on the negative side, there is corporeal deckne, s o l l isolation, and divrne abandonment; facmg these phenomena in Ps 71 is the integrative force located in praise of God, through which old people, with therr expenences of kfe and God, are bound into both the human commumty and cross-generational contexts.