Think back to a time when you were naturally feeling grateful. Perhaps there were feelings of a sense of relief, security and happiness. Perhaps the world seemed a bit brighter. Looking deeper, perhaps you noticed that you had entered into a field that lay behind the ego and opened the gates of true peace. This remembered experience is a small sample of the power of gratitude and the empowerment that is available at any time you choose to remain thankful.
Scientific scrutiny has found those who consciously develop an attitude of gratitude live better lives in a variety of ways. Thankfulness builds immunity to stress symptoms, it actually protects the vital organs including the heart and the brain. Thankfulness increases our actual and perceived sense of wellbeing. Thinking becomes positive, moods become more peaceful. We simply feel better in every way.
Going deeper, gratitude is the pathway to our True Source, whether you see that as a life force energy, intuition, the Divine or the universe.
When you stand in the space of gratitude, you become empowered with the miracle of living and draw more of that energy into your being. All of lifes possibilities and beauty illuminate, along with the clarity of mind to make the best use of them.
Because thankfulness is not from the ego, our mindless natures fail to take full advantage of what the power of gratitude offers. The ego, in its endless task of assuring survival from outside forces, is self-destructive. It floods the body with stress chemicals and shields us away from our own sense of wholeness, oneness and equanimity. It makes life a scary, dark, and depressing place to endure.
Ultimately, the ego lacks the capacity to value the full power of gratitude, it simply cannot survive when we remain in a thankful state. Because we identify so strongly with our ego, we too, forget. We forget how good it feels when we are living from the space of appreciation and we forget that when we are grateful, we are actually saving and nourishing our physical wellness. We are finally able to live in union with the timeless nature of our true source as it appears in the present moment.
Knowing that gratitude is the antidote to living a life ruled by the ego, it becomes apparent that to truly be alive and mindful, we must become more appreciative. We must forge onward and hunt what to be thankful about as if we would hunt water if we were trying to survive in the desert. In the desert, we do not stumble around hoping to come upon a body of water, we seek it out because our life depends on it.
Can you see how your life depends on seeking ways to be grateful?
When the skills of living in gratitude are weak, it can be difficult to begin this particular hunt for survival. Suggestions such as making a list of things to be thankful for is a popular way to begin. Setting an intention to become mindful to what can be celebrated in each moment can also be helpful. It can sometimes mean starting with the smallest of appreciations, such as not having a toothache or being able to breathe.
As you advance on your path toward becoming more grateful, something amazing will happen.
You will learn that just as the ego creates drama in order to escape from it and feel useful, you will gain capacity to create more sustainable levels of appreciation. As you progress through those levels, you will begin to experience the full power of gratitude in your life. That is where the miracles will begin.