We have completed the first episode filmed in Sardinia,
Italy and are currently looking for distribution of our
“LIFE LESSONS”© DOCUMENTARY SERIES.
Project Summary: This documentary series touches on the current subject of the aging population.
It approaches this issue through testimonies of elders in remote communities around the world, exploring subjects such as the value and role of family in life, the importance of the connection to nature, the impact of health care throughout their lives, and the inter connectivity of all these life lessons collected to recognize that we are one human race, no matter what race, culture or place we come from. It also aims to restore dignity, foster social cohesion and inclusion, so to face the challenges of negative perceptions that hinder their full integration in society.
All of this will form an inter generational guideline to highlight what is really important since these elders have the privilege of putting things in perspective due to a lifetime of experience. This will help the new generation immensely by understanding where and on what they should focus their attention.
As the elder population increases, we are interested to find how this change in demographics is changing the face of the family and in turn the impact on the community. We want to know how the role of the elder in each particular community has changed and how much it has remained intact with the values and traditions these elders had toward their elders as they grew up.
Together with collecting such important views on these issues, the documentary also aims to present itself in an artistic way, in order to combine the power of the testimonies of the elders with visually stimulating material, to create a unique product. These images will represent the beauty of the landscapes that molded these lives, together with the joyful humanity of these people who will be given all the respect and dignity that they deserve.
Background: In many cultures around the world, words of wisdom that are expressed by the oldest members of a community, often referred to as “elders,” are held in the highest regard. These insights, which are formed by years of living, a variety of experiences and lessons learned, offer a connection to the past and an invaluable roadmap for present and future generations. In the 21st century, many of the “old ways” have been abandoned or replaced with seemingly more efficient approaches to get things done. Technology has facilitated this abandonment, often leaving little connection between the past and present. As a world community, this has significantly affected the quality of human interaction and relationships between older and younger generations. While cultures constantly evolve, more people, young and old, have begun to question the faster pace of life and ease of access to information through technology. A result has been more frequent instances of cultural abandonment, which can be a disservice to those in younger generations in particular, and the global community in general.
Purpose: Life Lessons is a video documentary series that will capture what selected elders from different parts of the world believe is most important for younger generations of the 21st century to help shape lives of greater meaning and purpose. This project will explore the impact of technology on the humanity of the young people by showing them insights and experiences that have shaped the lives of elders. Five countries have been selected because of the significance of this number. According to Sikhism, a religion which originated in the Punjab region of India in the 15th century, great emphasis is placed on five attributes which are living a life of truth; contentment; compassion; humility; and love. According to the Bible, the number five represents redemption and grace.
Five single episodes, each of them 45 minutes long, will be filmed in these selected continents and countries:
OCEANIA – Papua New Guinea: Papua New Guinea is one of the most culturally diverse countries with more than 800 indigenous languages. As diverse as this country is, it is also one of the most remote and least explored, culturally and geographically. Color scheme: All colors palette will be used for this segment, highlighting all the beautiful colors of the nature of the country where these elders live.
ASIA – Bhutan: Bhutan is a remote Himalayan country that protects its traditions and measures prosperity through levels of happiness rather than productivity. This philosophy is in direct contrast with those of high-income nations, which often measure success by status and material wealth. Color scheme: Red – this is one of the two colors presented in the national flag, and it also represents fire, one of the four primordial essentials in the Buddhist view of the origin of the Universe. A Sakura film effect will be used to give the footage a pallid reddish effect
AFRICA – Niger: Niger has natural resources such as oil and uranium but it consistently ranks as one of the poorest low-income countries in the world, according to the United Nations’ Human Development Index. Color scheme: Brown – it represents the color of the earth, the soil, since cultivating it is the main activity that the majority of its population is engaged in. It also represents the desert plains and the sand dunes, a predominant part within this landlocked country. A sepia filter will be used throughout this episode.
EUROPE – Sardinia, Italy: Sardinia is an island which has one of the highest percentages of centenarians i.e., people who live to or beyond 100 years in the world. Sardinia has a rich cultural tradition that embraces simplicity. Color scheme: Yellow – this color has been chosen to represent the wheat, the bread, important staple for the elders of this country during their lifetime, and also representing the light of the sun that shines on this island all year long. The interviews of the elders will have a predominant yellow tone, reminiscent of old photographs.
NORTH AMERICA – United States: Elders interviewed in America will be chosen from poor and underserved remote communities where access to technology can be very limited. Color scheme: Black and white – the footage within this country will be shown in black and white, covering all the communities included in this episode, from the Native Americans to the communities in the South and in the North West.
The communities in the selected countries outside of the United States have retained varying degrees of their respective cultural traditions. In general, each has not been as affected by the technological revolution and the fast-paced way of life experienced in America. This project will capture the wisdom of the elders from each country and what they would like to communicate to the younger generations of the 21st century. This will include insights, ideas and suggestions about what they believe helps to shape a life that is well lived and exults an individual’s true purpose rather than focusing solely on pursuits such as material gain. A synthesis of the collective ideas from the elders from each country will be used to create a guide on behalf of young people by including rich information about the ways of tradition and the strategies for success of the modern era.
Target Audience: Young people in America and Europe between the ages of 18 and 30 are the selected target group for this project. A growing number in this age cohort are unaware of the positive impact that knowledge of cultural traditions can have in facilitating greater self-awareness and understanding. Technology, while an important part of life, can contribute to increases in social isolation, social awkwardness and cultural illiteracy. In more societies, particularly high-income nations in the West, elders are increasingly discounted and disrespected by those in younger generations rather than revered and cherished. Life Lessons seeks to address this issue to begin a new dialogue and movement to acknowledge, honor and celebrate the elders to ensure a better present and a greater future.
WE ALL MOVE FORWARD WHEN WE HONOR THOSE THAT CAME BEFORE.