Gratitude is a uniquely human attribute. When done with intention it represents the perfect antidote, not only for the tragic things we're assailed with in the media hour by hour, it is the perfect cure for our tendency as human beings to revert to our most base instincts.
Winter is coming... with questions about your relationship status.
For the shy adult or the grumpy teen, expressing gratitude around the Thanksgiving table can seem awkward and trite. Yet it's basically compulsory -- saying "nothing" or "I don't know" when it's our turn to speak won't endear us to our family members.
The holiday rituals focus us on the highest aspects of ourselves. Do we share and are we thankful and loving for just one or two days? For a season? To reap a bountiful harvest of our humanity requires daily attentiveness beyond the celebratory rituals that so beautifully and dutifully remind us.
Estimates vary, but somewhere between 10 and 16 million Americans are defrauded each year in this way. Thanksgiving can be an awkward time of year for some victims, since family members account for more than 30 percent of the identity thieves.
While we may be far removed from the origins of our meal, food connects us in ways that we probably take for granted. While a national holiday dedicated to thankfulness is wonderful, how would our lives change if we took a few moments to express gratitude every time we ate?
The more I get out of my head and look around at the blessings in my life, the happier and more peaceful I am.