October 29
Reflect on your present blessings,
of which every person has many,
not on your past misfortunes,
of which all people have some.

Charles Dickens


Today's Meditation:

How many blessings do I have in my life right at this moment?  Oh, my goodness--if I really were to sit down for five minutes and make a list of the people and things and situations in my life that are positive, those blessings would far outweigh my past misfortunes, and they also would outweigh the current negative things, of which there are relatively few to speak of.

Charles gives us some really good advice here.  If we spend our time thinking of misfortunes already past, then our minds are occupied in the present moment with negative thoughts and ideas, and just how can that possibly help us to live in a positive way in the here and now?  We always have a choice as to what we focus on in our minds, and if we choose to keep our minds on negative things from the past, no matter how justified we feel in doing so, we're still keeping our minds focused on the negative.  And what good does that do?

One of the reasons for which I prefer to stay focused on my present blessings is that I've found from experience that the more I stay focused on blessings, the more blessings come my way in the future.  It's like by focusing on the positive, I'm opening a door that lets in more positive; conversely, when I focus on the negative, I'm opening a door for the negative and more negative things push their way into my life.

We've all faced misfortune.  Some of us keep ourselves miserable by continuing to focus on those misfortunes, and not allowing ourselves to open up to the positive.  Others of us, though, allow those misfortunes to lie in the past, where they belong, and we focus on the blessings that we have.  The ability to make the most of our here and now lies in our decisions concerning where we keep our own focus.

Questions to consider:

Why is it so easy for so many people to stay focused on past misfortune?  What good does it do them?

How many blessings do you have in your life right now? 

How might we go about keeping our minds on our blessings?

For further thought:

Let go. Why do you cling to pain? There is nothing
you can do about the wrongs of yesterday. It is
not yours to judge. Why hold on to the very thing
which keeps you from hope and love?

Leo Buscaglia


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