forget to visit our page dedicated to this beautiful holiday!
Day comes, by statute, once a year; to the honest person it comes as
frequently as the heart of gratitude will allow.
Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest people, but be careful
that you do not take the day and leave out the gratitude.
gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is
generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch Heaven.
A thankful person is thankful under all
circumstances. A complaining soul complains even if he or she lives in paradise.
Why and for What?
When I go out
jogging in the morning, I sometimes notice how much weather
influences people's response to life and to one another.
When it is gray and rainy, many people look unhappy.
When the sun is out and the temperature and humidity are
comfortable, people are smiling and calling out to one
another, "Hello, isn't it a lovely day." For
me, a lovely day is any day I wake up. If I'm awake, I'm
grateful to be alive and to have another day to experience
I speak as a
realist, not an optimist. I know that the longer I live,
the more problems I will have. So what is there to be
grateful for? I am grateful every day for the
opportunity to have more problems, to learn how to live with
them and rejoice in them. That is enough, but there is
more to be thankful for. Every day is another
opportunity to love and interact with God's creation, and on
some days to be a co-creator.
weather or the events of the day do not determine whether I am
grateful for my life on that day. Every time I jog
through the world, I am awed by what I find. On a winter
morning, when it seems too cold and slippery for safe jogging
or bicycling, I can still go out and experience the glory of
sunlight turning icy branches into strings of sparkling
diamonds. . . .
gratitude depends on what life gives you or what other people
do for you or to you, you will be disappointed more often than
you are grateful.
But you can learn to feel grateful by
rethinking your attitude towards life. First, remember
that contentment lies in giving. If you know that giving
is better than receiving, then you can feel grateful for what
you are able to give others. This does not mean you
ignore your own needs. You will decide what to give and
how to give it, and then at the end of the day you will be
grateful for having had the chance to give in your own
way. Remember, we all have something to give, and our
ability to give is not related to our finances or physical
grateful simply for being alive. When you are grateful
for life, pure and simple, your life becomes one you can be
grateful for. That may strike you as circular or even
backward logic, but your attitude really does have an effect
on how things work out. When you can't change your life
and other way, you can still change your attitude. When
you do, your life changes. You find more chances to
love, and you will be surprised to se how much more love is
returned to you.
book is a continuation of the work I began when I became
Bernie. It is a collection of stories about how to deal with
life's difficulties. Most of the people in these stories
have not had the great wake-up call; that is, they are mot
facing life-threatening illnesses. So in a sense, this book
is preventive medicine. It is a prescription for living that
gives you effective and healthy ways of dealing with the
adversity that occurs in everyone's life. I want to help you
learn to accept your mortality before something catastrophic
brings you face-to-face with the end of your life.
-from the introduction
people behind the words
Two - Year Three
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Gratitude (an excerpt)
There is a
wonderful Hasidic parable about the power of gratitude to change the
course of our destiny in a heartbeat, the speed, I imagine, it takes
for a "thank you" to reach Heaven's ears.
Once times were
tough. Two men--both poor farmers--were walking down a country
lane and met their Rabbi. "How is it for you?" the
Rabbi asked the first man. "Lousy," he grumbled,
bemoaning his lot and lack. "Terrible, hard, awful.
Not worth getting out of bed for. Life is lousy."
Now, God was
eavesdropping on this conversation. "Lousy?" the
Almighty thought. "You think your life is lousy now, you
ungrateful lout? I'll show you what lousy is."
Then, the Rabbi
turned to the second man. "And you, my friend?"
Rabbi--life is good. God is so gracious, so generous. Each
morning when I awaken, I'm so grateful for another day, for I know,
rain or shine, it will unfold in wonder and blessings too bountiful to
count. Life is so good."
God smiled as the
second man's thanksgiving soared upwards until it became one with the
harmony of the heavenly hosts. Then the Almighty roared with
delighted laughter. "Good? You think your life is
good now? I'll show you what good is!"
Gratitude is the
most passionate transformative force in the cosmos. When we
offer thanks to God or to another human being, gratitude gifts us with
renewal, reflection, reconnection. Gratitude bestows reverence,
allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent
moments of awe that change forever how we experience life (is it
abundant or is it lacking?) and the world (is it friendly or is it
hostile?). Once we accept that abundance and lack are parallel
realities and that each day we choose--consciously or
unconsciously--which world we will inhabit, a deep inner shift in our
reality occurs. We discover the sacred in the ordinary and we
realize that every day is literally a gift. How we conduct our
daily round, how we celebrate it, cherish it, and consecrate it is how
we express our thankfulness to the Giver of all good.
Gratitude holds us
together even as we're falling apart. Ironically, gratitude's
most powerful mysteries are often revealed when we are struggling in
the midst of personal turmoil. When we stumble in the darkness,
rage in anger, hurl faith across the room, abandon all hope.
While we cry ourselves to sleep, gratitude waits patiently to console
and reassure us; there is a landscape larger than the one we can see.
that everyone can experience the transformational rewards of
being grateful, Ban Breathnach designed a day-by-day journal
for counting one's blessing. Years of disciplined gratitude
have taught Ban Breathnach that "if you give thanks for
five gifts every day, in two months you may not look at your
life in the same way as you might now." The journal itself is highly
inviting--bordered with simple country colors of cream, corn
yellow, and dried sage. But even more inviting are the
inspirational quotes sprinkled throughout, such as Henry Van
Dyke's message: "Gratitude is twofold--love coming to
visit us and love running out to greet a welcome
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photo's from a winter
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Let us give
thanks for this beautiful day.
Let us give thanks for this life.
Let us give thanks for this water
without which life would not be possible.
Let us give thanks for Grandmother Earth
who protects us and nourishes us.
Daily Prayer of the
Why Should We Be Thankful?
I've met people who don't consider gratitude to be an important
part of their lives. After all, they've worked hard for
everything that they have and they've received very little help
from others, so what's to be thankful for? In their minds,
all that they have for which they could be thankful is the result
of their effort, so if they're going to be thankful, they have
only themselves to thank.
Many of these people have a point, no matter how weak that
point may be. Personally, I know what it's like to fight
battles alone, with no help from anyone. Many times in my
life I've found myself in situations in which nobody was there to
offer encouragement or assistance. Sometimes those
situations have been much more difficult because of that lack of
support, but fortunately, I've been able to make it through most
of those situations pretty well. There have even been times
in my life when I've felt that everything I did, I did alone, and
there was really nothing to be thankful for. Yes, I found a
job that I liked, but that school needed a teacher anyway, and if
it wasn't me, it would have been someone else. Sure, I
accomplished that task, but it would have been much easier--and
probably much more enjoyable--if someone had been there to help
grateful for what you have now. As you begin to think
about all the things in your life you are grateful for, you will
be amazed at the never-ending thoughts that come back
to you of more things to be grateful for.
This lack of gratitude, though, has been quite a hindrance to
me. Not acknowledging the things that I have to be thankful
for has kept me separated from life, pushed even further into
isolation and separation. Gratitude is a force that allows
us to feel the connectedness of life, the oneness with everything
that surrounds us and helps us to get through life. When I
don't feel gratitude, I don't realize that the trees around me are
working hard to produce oxygen so that we can all breathe and
live. Of course, there's a valid argument that the trees
aren't doing this consciously, that they aren't working to give us
anything, but I believe that argument to be more harmful than
You see, gratitude isn't something that we practice in order to
show others how grateful we are. Gratitude is a force that
we work on developing because it makes us stronger human
beings. It gives us strength in our dealings with others,
and it helps us to feel that we are part of something
larger. It helps us to see the purpose behind things that we
otherwise might view with despair or cynicism. Think about
it--when you die, would you prefer that the people who are dear to
you feel grateful that they had you in their lives while you were
there, or would you prefer that they spend their days in despair
because you're no longer there. I would love to think of the
people I love having a big party after I die, glad to have known
me and glad that I've gone to a better place.
is a fantastic kind of creativity
that can lead to spiritual
growth. Let us
choose our lives
with love and gratitude. Let us use the
and forgiving to bless ourselves and others and
make our lives more complete.
Despair, anger, and frustration come when we aren't grateful
for the simple things in life--the smile and greeting, the touch
on the shoulder, the hug, the beautiful flowers, the cool breeze
on a summer day or the warm breeze on a chilly spring day, the
favorite songs we listen to when we're down. When we
actively reflect on how grateful we are for these things in our
lives, we connect ourselves to them, and we're part of a much
larger whole. When we recognize this connectedness, the
negatives don't seem so bad, for we see that there's usually a
larger purpose behind them, a purpose that will help us to grow
and develop as people.
Gratitude is a choice. Thanksgiving is something that we
can work on and develop, and the stronger we develop our skills of
giving thanks, the easier it is to see the purpose and the beauty
of life. We can choose to be completely logical and
realistic and view things as logical outcomes of certain actions
and situations, but when we do so, we rob ourselves of the
acknowledgement of our place in the world, and the many blessings
that we all have through no effort of our own.
Gratitude is the
highest form of acceptance. Like patience,
it is one of
the catalytic agents, one of the alchemist's secrets
for turning dross
gold, hell to heaven, death to life.
Where there is gratitude we
We wish you a happy Thanksgiving, even those of you who are in
countries which don't celebrate the day. And we wish you the
ability to practice Thanksgiving fully and unconditionally in your
lives, so that you may become richer and more vital, more alive,
and more aware of all the wonder that surrounds us all every day.
of the most important elements of living life fully is
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and their motives and fears and desires, of the things that
affect us most in our lives, both positively and negatively.
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gratitude ignites the light within us and is a sure path to joy.
Gratitude is one of the highest vibrations of energy we can
it's free, and anyone can give it. It can be as simple as
for soup, being thankful one can see, walk, wiggle a finger, or
a beat. One can be grateful for happy children, good
luck, and simply being alive. . . . Part of the journey toward joy
not waiting around for trouble, but being continuously aware of
In respect to our
home, the Earth, we say "Thank You"
to the Earth for everything that she gives to us, nourishing us
We give thanks to all the water in the world, everything within that
We give thanks to all the grass that lives on the land.
We give thanks to all the berries, the fruits, the medicines.
We give thanks to the animals that keep the forest clean.
We give thanks to all the trees, for the different uses that they
give to us:
for shelters, fires that we make at home at night keeping us warm.
We give thanks to the birds who sing their beautiful songs.
We give thanks to the four winds.
We give thanks to the grandfathers, the ones that bring the rain,
And we give thanks to our oldest brother the sun,
who shines his light every day.
We give thanks to our oldest grandmother the moon, for she is the
one who has been charged with the duty to make sure that light has a
continuance; she is the one that watches over all the movements of
the water, and also the water within us.
We give thanks to the stars her helpers, and we give special
thanksgiving to the four sacred beings that watch over the human
family. Sometimes we notice them when we are traveling in
dangerous places; they are the ones that come to our minds and say
"Go around, don't go any further." So that's what
they're there for: to protect us, steer us away from danger.
So that's what we do--we start right from the Earth, and we climb a
ladder, right to the special place beyond the heavens, where there's
a special spirit that lives there, the spirit that made it possible
for us to be here, and everything that we've mentioned. And so
with the collectiveness of our minds and hearts, we send a special
thanksgiving and greeting to the Great Spirit of us all.
songs honor the Covenant between humankind and the earth with
riveting music that masterfully weaves original compositions
and powerful messages from the ancient Iroquois prophecy. On
this progressive recording Shenandoah's enchanting voice is
backed with percussive grooves, vivid string arrangements, and
tribal sounds in a modern style that ranges from dance to
thankfulness is devoid of love and passion. Hope without
is lacking in fine perception. Faith without
thankfulness lacks strength
and fortitude. Every virtue divorced
from thankfulness is maimed
and limps along the spiritual road.
a year of one-sentence reminders
of ways that we can
make the most of our lives each day that we live.
New expanded edition!
Book - Kindle
novel of life and learning; Walker's fascinating journey
will remind you of all that is good in this world.
Book - Kindle
Read Chapter One
David agrees to
give 70-year-old Hector
a ride west, he can't imagine the lessons he'll learn
about his life.
Book - Kindle
Read Chapter One
and spending, we lay waste our powers," wrote
Wordsworth over 150 years ago. And we're still doing
Book - Kindle