November 27     

Today's quotation:

To live a life of gratitude is to open our eyes to the countless ways in which we are supported by the world around us.  Such a life provides less space for our suffering because our attention is more balanced.  We are more often occupied with noticing what we are given, thanking those who have helped us, and repaying the world in some concrete way for what we are receiving.

Gregg Krech

Today's Meditation:

This world with its resources and the people in it who make use of those resources really does a marvelous job in providing for us.  We as a species really do want for nothing, in spite of the fact that our appetites and desires grow broader constantly.  We have everything we need to live full and fulfilling and healthy lives here on this planet that gives us everything we need to do so, in "countless ways."

Only when we realize the depth and number of the many gifts that we get from the world around us can we begin to appreciate those gifts in a real way.  The trees give us oxygen to breathe and lumber with which we build.  Water helps us to live and keeps the trees alive.  Animals provide us with food and labor and clothing and companionship.  Beauty is everywhere, from the magnificence of mountain views to the songs of the birds.  Materials that we take from the ground build our houses and are used for cars and other goods.  Animals that died thousands of years ago provide us with fuels to keep us warm and keep us moving.  The list is pretty much endless.

With all that said, just how grateful are we to the earth?  Just how often do we stop and say "thank you" to this planet for all that it provides for us?  If we view it as an inanimate object, of course, we may say that we can't really thank an object.  But are we really in tune with exactly what the earth is, especially if we don't even keep ourselves aware of all that it does for us, all that it gives to us?

Gratitude that we feel for the earth may not affect the earth at all, but it sure can be beneficial to us as we keep in mind all the wonderful blessings that this planet gives to us on a regular basis.

Questions to consider:

When was the last time you felt gratitude for this planet?

Why do so many people have a hard time with the idea of expressing gratitude to an "inanimate object"?

How can feeling gratitude for this planet help make our lives richer?

For further thought:

If the Earth does grow inhospitable toward human presence, it is primarily because we have lost our sense of courtesy toward the Earth and its inhabitants, our sense of gratitude, our willingness to recognize the sacred character of habitat, our capacity for the awesome, for the numinous quality of every earthly reality.

Thomas Berry

more thoughts and ideas on the Earth



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