Be Grateful

Image

I’m the happy host of Thanksgiving dinner this year.  I have thankfully taken over this holiday and hope to continue to host for years to come.  I love the possibility of turning the actual tradition and legacy of this bloody, depressing holiday on it’s ear and giving it a renewed, hopeful boost.  I aim to make it all about being thankful and showing gratitude and all but ignore the real reason for the holiday.  My kids will learn about that in school.  At my thanksgiving table we will celebrate each other and the things we are thankful for while we fill ourselves with delicious food that we are grateful to be eating.

As I decorated my table for 17 with flowers and candles and such, I realized something was missing.  So, I gathered several of my favorite gratitude quotes and printed them on nice paper and carefully placed them around the table.  As I placed them, I realized that the quotes told a story.  So here they are, and here is the story they have to tell.  Some I was able to attribute to people and some have just been tossed around for so long that  I’m not sure who originally said them, but all ring true and all bear repeating.  And for all of this, I am grateful…

Start each day with a grateful heart.

I try to be grateful for the abundance of the blessings that I have, for the journey that I’m on and to relish each day as a gift. ~James McGreevey

Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have.

Someone else is happy with less than what you have.

The root of joy is gratefulness.  ~David Steindl-Rast

The happiest people do not have the best of everything, they make the best of everything they have.

Gratitude turns what we have into enough. ~Melody Beattie

It is not happy people who are thankful, it is thankful people who are happy.

Gratitude unlocks the fulfillment of life. ~Melody Beattie

Gratitude is the moral memory of mankind. ~George Simmel

What are you grateful for today?

Image

Healing Crisis

Image

When you realize that you’ve been sleeping, and until now you haven’t quite had the awareness that you have now, there comes a moment that your eyes may open quickly, maybe a bit wider than usual, and you are finally more awake than you’ve been in a long time. You hear sounds more acutely, see things in deeper focus, and smell scents that you may have missed just moments before. The world has opened up. You’ve become more aware. How did you miss this before? What was I doing without this perception?

It may seem euphoric at first. Thoughts come flooding in about the things that you’ve overlooked and all the things you can achieve with this new sense of wonder and curiosity.  So much to say and do!  And it may last for a while… But just as suddenly as the realization hit you, the same type of understanding may lead you to another apprehension. Maybe it’s all too much. Change is difficult and your body and spirit may process this as it would a traumatic event. Transition can be difficult and growing pains can hurt. Bringing in something new means getting rid of the old. A spiritual and emotional cleanse can happen in different ways for different people. I liken this to a good cry. But for change to happen, a shift must occur. A spiritual cleansing can be good for the soul, but it can hit hard.

When you cleanse the physical body of toxins, some people experience a healing crisis.  Their symptoms worsen before they improve. This can be scary and uncomfortable, but it can lead to a release of years worth of impurities that had been stored within the body and finally released. After you recover from this, you begin to truly feel the benefits.  Sticking with your commitment to bringing your body into balance can bring a new sense of accomplishment and wellness that often motivates people to continue to bring in more positive changes. The reward is a refreshing feeling of a cleansed, healthy body and is worth the effort and stamina it takes to achieve. Experiencing new life regimens can lead to feelings that you are breaking down or losing control, but if you view this time in your life as an opportunity for continued positive change than you will more likely see it as a break through.

Flushing toxins from your body can have distressing temporary side effects, but can bring about many positive long term changes. The same goes for the release of toxic emotional and spiritual beliefs that can bring on an awakening for people who often times didn’t realize they were lost or sleeping. Dealing with a crisis brings out the best in some people and the worst in others. It’s not until we are faced with a challenge that we often have the opportunity to get reacquainted with our true selves.

Photo courtesy of hotblack from morguefile.com

Discovering Yugen

Image

Yugen is an awareness of the universe that triggers emotional responses too deep and mysterious for words.  Yugen is at the core of the appreciation of beauty and art in Japan.  It values the power to evoke rather than the ability to state directly.  The principle of Yugen shows that real beauty exists when, through it’s suggestiveness, only a few words, or brush strokes, can suggest what has not been said or shown, and hence awaken many inner thoughts and feelings.  “Yugen is to watch the sun sink behind a flower-clad hill, to wander on and on in a huge forest without thought of return, to stand upon the shore and gaze after a boat that disappears behind distant islands, to contemplate the flight of wild geese seen and lost among the clouds.” (urbandictionary.com)

The concept of Yugen suggests that true beauty lives in the moments of life in between the grand gestures of greatness and is found in the subtle, yet suggestive efforts that can evoke emotion beyond words.  Those fleeting times that take your breath away and remind you that life has depth beyond our awareness.  These times give us hope and courage to move forward and inspire the promise of more Yugen yet to come.  These moments are my muse.

From what I can tell there is no exact English counterpart for this word.  I believe it can be compared to being in awe of something or feeling a state on enlightenment.  An experience of Yugen is meant to define a moment of true bliss involving a profound sense of beauty.  For me, this type of experience evokes a reflective state when I can summon provoking concepts for further study.  I liken it also to a song that brings you right back to a moment in time or a smell that snaps you into an altered state.  Yugen should be celebrated as a natural high and a unique opportunity to marvel at the rare moments in our lives when we are lucky enough to witness nature’s true unaltered beauty, or just the intricate artistry of life.  There are beautiful things all around us, though we don’t see them everyday or even often enough.  But when you open your eyes to possibilities of finding more Yugen in your life, then more Yugen will appear.  You can’t find something you’re not looking for, and anything in this life that gives rise to feelings of such splendor is worth the endeavor.

Life is short and it is our only true job to enjoy it.  Claw to the top of the mountain and know that when you get there you will be able to stand in awe of the Yugen you have found and the Yugen you have created.

“When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.” – John Lennon

Photo courtesy of keyseeker on morguefile.com

myhappypromise

(function() { window._pa = window._pa || {}; var pa = document.createElement('script'); pa.type = 'text/javascript'; pa.async = true; pa.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 'https:' : 'http:') + "//tag.perfectaudience.com/serve/507e0153f16a97000200001c.js"; var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(pa, s); window._pq = window._pq || []; _pq.push(['datasphere.track', 'BDSP-12593449']); })();
%d bloggers like this: