Not taking the blessings of peace for granted, we offer our perpetual thanksgiving. Every day.
Today is World Gratitude Day. It is also the International Day of Peace. What a harmonic convergence of goodness. It seems only so fitting that both these occasions would make their home on the same spot on our calendar each year. Officially adopted and advanced by the United Nations, both causes affirm hope, and offer meaningful recognition and celebration of the power of individuals to make a difference in their lives and in the world.
In ways not immediately apparent, gratitude and peace fit together seamlessly. Clearly, peace gives rise to gratitude. We must be grateful for any and all conditions of peace, and invest ourselves in their unfolding. Not taking the blessings of peace for granted, we offer our perpetual thanksgiving. Every day.
But how does gratitude bring about peace?
Living gratefully helps us to know and create peace from the inside out. We focus on cultivating emotional, physical and mental states that embody peace, and we become better peacemakers. When we are grateful, we also become more of what the world needs in order to be trustworthy peace-keepers:
- Gratefulness makes us aware that life is a gift, and that treasuring and protecting this gift is paramount. We savor and steward the large and the small things alike, and take a stand on behalf of what matters. Peace matters.
- Grateful people experience themselves as interconnected with all others, and recognize our inextricability as a global family living on this Earth. What is done to one, is done to all…
- When we are grateful, “less is more” to us; we are more content and experience sufficiency more readily. This makes us less likely to contribute to habits of consumption that amass and deplete precious resources, and give rise to conflict.
- Gratefulness engenders love, compassion, and respect. It shapes how we relate to each other, and compels us toward kindness and generosity…towards those things that nurture peace. Grateful people are moved by love toward justice.
In the spirit of peace and gratitude, we offer you the gift of “A Grateful Day.” This beautiful, updated 5-minute video meditation by Brother David connects us to the heart of what matters, every day. Please enjoy this gift and pass it on…
More information and resources about A Grateful Day…
What makes your day a Grateful Day? Please share your reflections below…
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It was a good day to eat luscious chocolate cake with my husband on his 84th birthday. For that I am grateful.
I am blessed to have a glorious wooded area near me , and when I walk there, even now and then, I stop ,stare and breath in the wonder of nature. The fact, that I can walk, see, and sense this wonder, makes me eternally grateful. It is truly a grateful day.
Good morning, The excerpt (below) from Pema Chodron’s book, “Start Where You Are” should be read at the United Nations. It is so powerful. Perhaps, in all situations our first thought could and should be, “Be still and know that I am God…Be still and know that I am…Be still and know that I…Be still and know that…Be still and know…Be still…BE.
Life is Process… …Respond instead of React…Respect instead of Regret…Evolve instead of Revolve…Go in the Peace of a Grateful Heart.
“One of my favorite dharma teachers is Dr. Seuss; he captures the human condition so beautifully. One of his stories starts with two people walking toward each other along a narrow road. When they meet, they each refuse to step to the side so that the other can pass. Everyone else builds bridges and even whole cities around them, and life just goes on. But the two stubborn ones stand there for the rest of time, refusing to budge. It never occurs to them even after eighty-five years that they could be curious about why the other is refusing to move, or that they could try to communicate. They could have had a really interesting debate in all those years even if they had still never moved.
The point is not that you’re trying to achieve harmony or smooth everything out. Good luck, if that’s your goal. The point is to live together on this earth with our differences, to communicate for its own sake. The process is the main thing, not the fruition. If you achieve your goal with aggressive tactics, nothing really changes anyway. Pema Chodron, “Start Where You Are” pp 168-169”
Very interesting! Thank you for this reflection, the point is to live with our differences. So wise. So true. It takes humility, too, and for this it is harder. On the other side, if I try to smooth these differences, I believe to be powerful, to have the authority to change other people. But who am I, for living with this presumption? maybe it is a result of the struggle between our basic survival instinct and the deep wish to a peaceful world. Luckily we all have good Teachers (both in the past and in the present); we all have a brain, a heart, and the opportunity and possibility of awareness. May each of us nurture a desire of a true peaceful and grateful life.