The season of “gratitude” is upon us! And how many of us are truly grateful? I invite you to search your heart and be okay with either yes, I am grateful, or no, not so grateful. There are no right or wrong answers in this journey of ours. The journey is solely ours and opening up to awareness will bring us closer and closer to a state of inner peace and joy.
The problem is that when times get tough, we don’t usually have a practical method to help us quickly find our way back to an attitude of gratitude.
Here’s a story taken from Jonathan Robinson, author of Technology of Joy that may assist you in getting to this place of gratitude……I heard him speak on New Dimensions on KKCR here in Kauai……
“Many years ago, I’d heard about an Indian guru who had come up with a magical mantra that supposedly helped people develop an attitude of gratitude. I decided to visit him in India and see what this gratitude practice was. So after traveling 18 hours by plane, and then taking a taxi for another 2 hours, I finally reached his ashram. When at last I finally met the bearded guru, I told him I wanted to hear his amazing mantra for helping people practice daily gratitude. He said in his heavy Indian accent, “Ah yes, my technique is the most powerful mantra on earth.” He leaned in to whisper it into my ear. He said, “Whenever possible, repeat the following words in your head. The magical mantra I give you is the words, “Thank You.”
I was supremely disappointed. I said, “That’s IT!?”
He said, “No, ‘that’s it’ is the mantra you have been using, and that mantra makes you feel like you never have enough. My mantra is the words ‘Thank You’—not ‘That’s It.’ ‘That’s it’ will take you nowhere, but ‘Thank You’ will quiet your mind and open your heart. So when you eat good food, say thank you! When you see your child, or a sunset or your pet, repeat the mantra ‘thank you’ and soon you will have an attitude of gratitude for each blessing in your life.”
Well, I admit I was pretty skeptical, but after all I had journeyed, I tried out what he said. I began saying, “Thank you” for each person and each thing life brought to me. Rather than just saying “thank you” from my head, I said it from my heart, with real feeling. After awhile, I started to feel the full power of gratitude overwhelming me! This ridiculously simple gratitude exercise actually lead to a whole new level of me expressing gratitude—and feeling it on a daily basis.”
To expand our gratitude and joy here is a prayer of gratitude that you may want to use, for as joy deepens we can be happy with life itself and not allow conditions to bring us to that state:
Bring to mind someone you care about and you feel joy when you bring them to the mind and heart – picture them and feel the natural joy you feel for their goodness, their well being, their happiness, and with each breath offer them this prayer……
May you be joyful, may your happiness increase, may you not be separated from great happiness, may your good fortune and your causes for your joy and happiness increase. Feel the joy and the caring with your heart.
We can offer this prayer for ourselves with, “may I be joyful, may my happiness increase, may I not be separated from great happiness, may my good fortune and my causes for my joy and happiness increase.”
You can open and include neutral people that you may not have strong feelings either way and also difficult people until you extend appreciative joy to all beings everywhere.
For myself, I keep a gratitude journal that I write in daily – sometimes it’s only one sentence, other times it’s a bit longer. Either way, I keep myself in check and accountable for all that I am grateful for in my life. I’ve started this journal in 2014 and to this day I continue to write gratitude. It’s a discipline, it’s a practice that is strengthening my gratitude muscle!
The possibilities are always exciting when you live….
In an attitude of gratitude that leads to joy,