Age related disorders in the Bible

Y. Barak*, A. Achiron

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Judaism referred to illness as a symbol of evil that must be eradicated. Jewish texts such as the Bible and the Talmud are thus a rich source of descriptions of diseases and their proposed cures. The aim of the present study is to describe age-related disorders in the Bible with a special emphasis on psychogeriatric syndromes. A computer-assisted search of the Bible (Old Testament) using the index words: elders, aging, ancient, gray, old age and old was carried out. Appropriate references were scanned and categorized. The elderly are allocated a special place in biblical society. Physical changes and sensory impairments related to aging are extensively described. In addition, sexual functioning, apathy, lack of initiative, stroke and decline in cognitive abilities are also noted in biblical texts in relation to old age. Age-related disorders, both physical and neuropsychological were recognized in the Bible and humane and social interventions recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-278
Number of pages4
JournalAging and Mental Health
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


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