Sunday, November 27, 2005

It's difficult to work on Sunday. I've got an article due tomorrow that I need to put some more work into, but my whole being is railing aginst the idea that it is the day of rest, by jove. No matter that I've rested since Wednesday, my cells are in revolt. We do many things on Sundays, they are saying, from cooking to walks, but work? Never!

It's a lovely gray-blue day. I remember that the days after Thanksgiving always bring that wintry scape if it hasn't previously arrived (considering it was 80 degrees just a week or so ago, you can imagine). Suddenly the trees seem more bare, the sky less blue, the air definitely chillier.

(Photo by Tom Jackson)


I've thought a lot about gratitude since before the Thanksgiving holiday, for months actually, but the holiday itself does provoke thinking about it in a vastly different way--partly because you've got to feel grateful despite the commercial wheels churning and the pressure to be with family and all the drama that tends to create. I've thought about the fact that gratitude is a very elusive idea in this culture. It's easy to be grateful for the fun, happy, nice things that come to us. Harder to be grateful for the whole thing, all the trappings, the life in full. And I by no means like to suggest that people should adopt gratitude for things they truly aren't, nor do I think that by pretending to feel grateful for "all" you will really evoke the powerful energy of it. However, I've been pleasantly surprised by what happens when I do feel that fuzzy surge of thanks for what I have/am/feel/see/do. A strange little streak of goodness follows. The energy of gratitude is much more powerful than we realize. But it has to be genuine. And when you go looking for ways to be grateful, it's surprisingly easy to generate.

On the topic of gratitude, and then some, about ten years ago I got heavily into the whole energy anatomy tape series by now quite famous Caroline Myss--who is like the Judge Judy of the new-age movement, a tough cookie with a sharp midwestern accent. It was as if the information had just been waiting for me to arrive. The idea that our energetic investments have a physical result, that how we "plug in" our energy by way of thoughts and feelings yields the consequences of our lives made perfect sense (and now I see it's the same idea as the Law of Attraction, only she was talking about it in relationship to our physical bodies). She too discussed gratitude, that the trick was to have it when everything was upside down in your life and messy, not when everything was going as you wanted it. I've always remembered that, though not always practiced it. But somehow it seems so important now and I am determined never to forget it again.

She also said one other thing that has stuck with me, and which I still to this day say to myself when choosing between options. "Take the unknown path." Only by venturing into that which we don't know and can't predict and haven't shaped expectations about, do we grow.


At 2:01 PM, Blogger Myfanwy Collins said...

Wonderful words of wisdom. I love the photo.

At 3:22 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

I also rail against working today, but I am....slowly....very very slowly....

Gratitude is tricky stuff, but that's helpful advice.


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