The Force of Gratitude

Written by on July 25, 2008 in The Healing Journey with 0 Comments

There is something compelling about the force of gratitude, especially in a society that’s characterized by so much entitlement. It is one of the reasons I became involved with the People of the Golden Vision.

I had never met anyone so gracious and so hopeful and grateful for the smallest act of kindness than the young Chinese girl who had been detained in New Orleans from the Golden Venture. One small note to her elicited such an outpouring of appreciation that she immediately won my heart. In all the years I have known her since, this is her nature.

Having a grateful heart, being able to appreciate the present moment, these things are crucial to finding happiness. The pursuit of happiness, we are so fond of claiming we have a right to in this country, is really a sad little joke. Because happiness can’t be pursued. It can only be accepted.

I’ve seen, too often, and lived this, the impossible and almost frantic attempt to capture that which can only be found by standing still. This does not mean apathy or non-engagement with our reality. To the contrary, standing still…or more accurately, being still, will take you farther than any amount of racing.

It, also, has nothing to do with physical activity. On the surface, a person may be very busy with schedules and commitments. But if done with awareness and mindfulness of the present moment, it can be a natural unfolding of that very present moment. More so than the person who sits on a mediation cushion to escape reality.

A grateful heart makes room to enter into this stillness, this mindfulness. And it is this very mindfulness that makes it possible to be grateful. And it changes things.

If we want to make a difference in this world, if we want to find the answer to the question, “How can I make a difference?”, maybe we should start with counting our blessings.

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About the Author

About the Author: Demian Yumei, author, singer/songwriter and artist activist, uses spoken, written word and original songs in her human rights activism. "For the Sake of Love” is her collection of songs written on Demian's healing journey, and “Little Yellow Pear Tomatoes” is a children’s book she wrote for her daughter about the interconnectedness of life published by Illumination Arts and endorsed by Jane Goodall. Currently, Demian is working on recording episodes for her podcast and writing on the "Where There's Smoke Series on Covert Abuse". .

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