So what does it mean to feel thankful in a world that is going off the deep end? It’s necessary, of course; without a sense of gratitude, life shrinks. It shrivels. It withers from the inside, and becomes an empty container. Life is too precious for that. I’m thankful for you, Kate my love. I’m thankful for my family, my friends, for the earth that still has autumn forests that form yellow tunnels and kaleidoscopes on a cool, damp autumn day that make all parts of me rejoice. I’m thankful for my health and strength so I can still hike, camp, and travel. I’m thankful for music that dances around me, for books I find, for food I love (including some that I cook, like tonight’s vegetarian sauerbrauten – a longtime Thanksgiving tradition. I’m thankful that I can write – people tell me I am good at it.
Is it a privlage that I can feel thankful? I have a roof, food, relative security. I don’t have to worry that I’ll be accused of trying to be a shoplifter in any store I enter. I don’t have to expect that a traffic cop will pull me over for something I haven’t done, that I live in a neighborhood where I can easily find fresh produce and healthy food, that I can possibly expect to live a few more decades, and on. And on. And on. However I might gripe, my life has been far easier than most of the rest of the world’s. Do I have a right to feel thankful for this?
I have an obligation to feel thankful. If I can feel that way, I can contribute more than if I despair and put myself down, or if I accept criticisms from people who know nothing about me. I can be far more helpful to the world if I am grateful, as long as I know all beings have a right to feel as grateful as I do. I’m borrowing a little from Buddhism with this last statement, and I’m not a Buddhist. but I can appreciate the insights that worldview offers. I’m writing pretty spontaneously and from the top of my head and heart here.The world is going off the deep end, but be thankful, all. Have a great day.