19    Mar 20100 comments

The World’s Oldest Man

The World's Oldest Man, David Pur
The World's Oldest Man, David Pur

He has smoked for 110 years, buried six of his nine children, accomplished more than a century of Torah studies, and he has 56 great grandchildren. David Pur, at 115 years old, is being visited by an entourage from the Guinness Book of World Records to be verified as the oldest person in the world.

Mr. Pur has lived through much of modern history. Born in 1895 in Iran, what was then Persia, under Mahommad Ali Shah Qajar, he watched the Qajar dynasty crumble with the building tensions of WWI and the subsequent overthrow by coup d'état. Pur's interest in the political minutia of his country led him to become an advisor to the Shah, where he was revered for his mastery of languages including Farsi, Hebrew, Arabic, Aramaic, French and later Tagalog.

His spirituality, compounded by the diverging political relations, led him to make Aliyah to Israel in 1948, where he now resides. Pur continues to follow politics, a medium he believes to be as a life long quest.

Pur’s friends repute his life to be lead by a positive outlook, and he holds strong to lifestyle, "the main thing is not to lose your optimism." This is a daunting task considering his age has led him to outlive his wife by 50 years and to burry 6 of his 9 children. But his resolve and tenacity are unyielding, as he states, "I understand that we must not let bitterness take hold of us."

If you are wondering what miracle diet leads to such longevity, Pur claims for breakfast to "drink a glass of brandy and eat a bowl of nuts". He avoids street food, fearing bacteria and poison, and avoids meats and fried food. He sticks mainly to seasonal fruit. He has smoked for 110 years, but claims not to inhale.

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