As Simrat at Akal Ranch says,
Gratitude creates its own attitude.
Once again, It’s Thankful Thursday, and I’m taking a moment to consider all the things I have to be grateful for. Part of mindful awareness is living gratitude every moment of every day, and not just while writing Thankful Thursday’s post.
The poet Hafiz writes in his poem It Felt Love,
How did the rose
Ever open its heart
And give to this world
All its beauty?
It felt the encouragement of light
Against its being,
We all remain
Elisha Goldstein, PhD writes that it is easier to open up and reveal our own gifts to the world when we feel positive loving encouragement.
Every day we have an opportunity to practice mindfulness with inspiration from this poem, learning to cultivate gratitude and lovingkindness (metta).
Goldstein suggests this practice to feel that encouragement:
• Think of a person or animal who represents light, who represents a loving and kind presence in your life. This can be a good friend who is alive, maybe someone who has passed away, a pet, or maybe a spiritual figure such as the Dalai Lama, Jesus, or even the hand of God.
• Take a moment to imagine that presence here, with you, looking into your eyes.
• Now imagine that person saying to you, “May you be safe and protected from inner and outer harm”, “May you be happy,” “May you be free from fear”, “May you be healthy in body and mind”. • You can also create your own wishes and aspirations here.
• Now turn toward that person and say that with the same intention to them.
• Now imagine your family and friends with you (those who you feel difficulty with and those who you feel more ease with) and with intention, saying those same words.
• Take a moment to just feel into how you are doing and whatever is there, just letting it be.
This is the core of mindfulness practice, which is founded upon gratitude.
Take a few minutes today to create your own Thankful Thursday. If you don’t have a blog of your own, you are welcome to post your thoughts here. If you have a blog, post what you are grateful for there, and please link back here. Feel free to tag other bloggers. We are trying to get a mindful movement of gratitude going.
© 2009 enlightened horsemanship through touch and Kim Cox Carneal
Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a Clinical Psychologist and conducts a private practice in West Los Angeles. He is co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook (New Harbinger, February 2010) Check out Dr. Goldstein’s acclaimed CD’s on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety and Depression, Addiction and Relapse Prevention, and Success and Stress Reduction at Work.