“Your fortune is misfortune, if it is not Love” - Silent Lotus
As we move towards a holiday dedicated to giving thanks, I contemplate the meaning of the word “Gratitude” and how to cultivate this feeling. Whenever we look at resources or in places that promote spirituality and mindfulness, we see the word GRATITUDE. We are frequently reminded to be grateful and often find ourselves casting judgment on those we deem as unthankful or entitled. Feeling authentic gratitude, however, is not always simple – especially during challenging times or when self-esteem is low. Not showing appreciation can be a sign of ego which in return is often based on a lack of self-esteem or even self-loathing. Ungratefulness is rooted in unhappiness, dissatisfaction and a disconnect from source (spirit). However, awareness of these egoic patterns in ourselves and others can allow for space to foster a shift in perspective and form a bridge to genuine gratitude. Grateful people tend to have healthier relationships and happier, more abundant lives; so it is definitely worth exploring ways to practice the art of thankfulness and enjoy a more fulfilling life.
HERE ARE SOME WAYS TO CULTIVATE GRATITUDE:
RITUAL, OFFERINGS AND PRAYERS
Gratitude rituals are effective and instill a feeling of fulfillment. Each morning, I step outside (ideally as the sun rises) and thank the sun, mother earth, and the universe for another day on this planet. As I do so, I cast cornmeal or rose petals in the air. It is a gratifying feeling and a reminder of my spiritual and physical riches. Every night before meditation, I take account of the many blessings in my life. When food is set before me, I take a moment to acknowledge my good fortune of having enough. This practice is also a good custom to honor with friends and family; voicing a blessing, lighting a candle or saying a gratitude prayer can reinforce that feeling. These or any similar practices are a way to become present, have perspective and keep our hearts open.
EXPRESS YOUR GRATITUDE TO SOMEONE WITH A POSITIVE ACTION
If somebody went out of their way to help you, provides constant support in your life or is simply a blessing on your path, pick a fitting time to show them your appreciation. Do not exclude teachers, employers or wealthy people from your gratitude list. Think clearly about what this person enjoys, not what YOU enjoy. It could be flowers or chocolates, tickets to a show or quality time with you. If they are dealing with money issues, this might be a good time share your prosperity by helping them out. Life is about giving, receiving and repaying.
FEED THE KARMA BANK
Do this with joy in your heart, and it will come back tenfold! Help a friend or a stranger in need – be generous. Support someone’s project or new business. Donate to charitable causes you are emotional about (for me it is saving dolphins and elephants), particularly if it is something that has affected your or a loved one's life (such as cancer, lupus, HIV, etc.) - even a little helps and creates a universal flow of abundance.
DONATE YOUR VALUABLE TIME TO HELP OTHERS:
Take a day off to help friends/family move or share your talents, whether they may be electrical, musical, linguistic, agricultural, financial, etc. Your knowledge, skills, and tools can truly make a difference in helping others flourish, but always make sure your assistance is welcome. You will most likely enjoy it, so offer it from the heart, with no strings attached or repayment expected! Forget the attitude of “You owe me” and the universe will repay you plentifully. Keep paying it forward! You will also inspire others with this practice.
Sending you much love and light and a BIG THANK YOU for your support. This sale is a gift to you and please never hesitate to email or call us with any questions, requests or concerns! Because of YOU, Kate’s Magik continues to thrive, inspire and make this world a more scent-sual place.
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