For What Are You Grateful?
I love Thanksgiving! For me, Thanksgiving is a day to gather with family and friends, to share delicious food and merriment, to rest the mind and body (after the cooking and dishes are done, of course), and to refresh the spirit. And I give thanks, for I am grateful.
For some, Thanksgiving is a day spent alone, another day without food, a day with no rest for the mind nor body, a day that may depress the spirit, perhaps even more than on other days. Gratitude may seem elusive.
Gratitude is present in each of our hearts. Sometimes the best way to discover it is to give something so that others feel it, and you will in turn feel it, too. And once gratitude begins to fill your own heart, you will understand that you have much for which to be grateful. Gratitude is at the heart of joy. Make room in your heart for it.
“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.”
― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
Can Joy Conquer Evil?
The world weeps with Paris today. The terrorist attacks that killed scores of people have left a city, a nation and the world in a state of shock, sadness and fear. My own heart is heavy, grieving for those who were killed or injured, feeling for those who have been scarred by the experience, mourning alongside those who lost loved ones and fearing what may come. And yet, my heart feels hope and love. Paris, and the rest of the world have awaken to a new day. Let us embrace the light of this new day, and that of each new day, to allow love to shine forth and bring joy again.
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." -Martin Luther King, Jr.
Where are you, Joy?
Today I received bad news about a project into which I've poured my heart and soul. My mind began thinking of a million things we should have done differently, and feeling guilty for letting down so many people. As I contemplated what to do next, I had to close my eyes and breathe deeply. This calmed my mind, allowing me to think more clearly. As I reflected on the many ideas ruminating in my mind, one stood out. We had to abandon our current path, and allow for something completely different. Why? Because this path was not working. It had to be put to rest, to be allowed to fail. Only then would we be able to rebuild something new, something that would have a chance to succeed. As I let go of the fear of failing, my mind grew peaceful and my heart was open again, and I could again feel the joy - the joy which had driven me to working so hard to help children get a good education in the first place. While my mind thought the prior path was the right one, my heart knew the truth, and when I faced that truth, joy was present. When joy feels elusive, seek truth.
author of "JOY"