Thanksgiving or gratitude has become a routine for me for almost two years now. While I do not have a specific schedule for what time I should do it, I still would not fail to be appreciative for at least one thing in a day. I know that we all have different interpretations of thanksgiving. For some of us, it is a moment where people come together in family gatherings to celebrate their relations and obviously try to maintain the connection that they share. For others thanksgiving is more of an appreciation, an activity that does not mean that people must congregate. It is more of an individual affair. Whichever group you subscribe to, ultimately the exercise or ritual, builds or strengthens your connection with those things that you are grateful for.
In most families, children are taught to offer thanksgiving or gratitude through prayer at mealtimes, just before they begin eating. We often give thanks to the creator for the gift of food. Others are of the opinion that the thanksgiving should be done at the stage of cooking the meal, even before it is set on the table. Obviously, people have different opinions about everything, so in this case, it is okay to do with what works for you. Thanksgiving at the table has been taken for granted for most of us, and it is nothing more than a routine before eating. There are other people also who do not give thanks at all, and what is wrong with that? Perhaps they feel like they are getting what they deserve.
My experience with thanksgiving has taught me that there is always a connection between you and the thing that you are grateful for. So, the more you are grateful for it, the stronger the connection becomes. In a way, this is how manifestation works. It is an art of creation. Isn’t it beautiful to know that through gratitude, you can create these things that you desire? In my gratitude I usually feel the energy run through my hands and travel through my body. So, I focus on the feeling that comes with this ritual.
Ever since I learned that I could feel energy by just opening my hands with my palms facing upwards, I knew that I was connecting to a bigger source of energy. This was the powerful energy of creation, which other people call, ‘Love’. I begun to open my hands and just think about the various things that I was grateful for. Of course, the first time I was amazed at the energy that I was feeling in my hands. I wondered if I could feel the same energy every time I practiced gratitude. So, I did it again and again, and each time the energy was there, it was always the same. It never changed at all.
I have formed the habit of giving thanks for my meals before, after or during eating. It is always easier to offer gratitude when I am eating alone because I have all the time and space to myself. When I am with other people, I rarely announce that I am giving thanks for the food. Instead, I just do it in my heart even as I eat. For this reason, I am always aware of what is going in my mouth at any given time. Most people find it weird when I read the ingredients of packed foods, but as I keep telling them, one needs to be aware of whatever they are eating and whatever the food can do to them.
I have a theory; Well, it is a theory to other people, but to me it is already in practice. Whenever I know that I am about to consume foods that contain ingredients that do not resonate with me, I give thanks for those ingredients with full knowledge that my gratitude and love for them protects me from their potential health effects. So, there it is, gratitude is protection of some kind, and it works for me all the time. I know that I have talked about food a lot, but that is just one area where I practice gratitude. The thing is, practicing gratitude also gets you rooted to whatever you are doing, wherever you are and the feeling that comes with what you are doing.
You will always know how focused your attention is on the ritual by how powerful the exercise is. Do you know what you are grateful for, and why you are grateful for it? These are questions that can be answered with visualization and feelings. You must not say them out loudly. Sometimes I feel so much appreciation for something that I get suspended in a zone where I am crying and laughing at the same time. This is never planned at all. Sometimes I am just listening to a song, and suddenly I feel this powerful energy moving through my body, from the top of my head to the feet. The energy moves through the whole body but is more concentrated at the heart center.
At such times I always feel like I am powerful, and powerless at the same time. I feel powerful because of the force that the energy comes with. At such times I can express a very heightened form of gratitude. My feelings are heightened in a sense. At the same time, I feel powerless because this energy is in control. The best word that I can use to describe this energy is, Love. Often, I feel like jumping and dancing and shaking in expressing this energy, but then again it is not like one loses control. It is subtle at the same time.
Certain times when this energy comes over me, I feel so appreciative for my relations, my friends and family. It is especially at these times that I do not utter a word, but just think of how much appreciative I am of the roles that they have played in my life. The examples that I have given are to show my relationship with this energy called gratitude. As it is with energy, it is always unique for everybody. For you to begin to interpret energy, you need to have interacted with it more. There is a phrase that I know we have come across in one way or the other, and I am going to quote it here, ‘The way that the creator works with us is the same, but the way that we work with the creator changes’.
Try as much as possible to apply the above statement in everything that you do, and remember, everything is energy. Gratitude will bring you closer to the things that you desire. Those that have already manifested, and those that are yet to be manifested. Gratitude happens in the space of love, and it is in the same space of love that creation happens. Do you now see the connection? Everything happens in love, and you are a creator, through love. Through love, all things are created. I do not know if you can give gratitude from your heart when you are sad. But I know you can be grateful for how or what you are feeling, and this needs a level of awareness and focus that requires one to view things from a higher perspective.
When you make gratitude an intrinsic part of your life, you begin to see blessings manifesting. The best part is the relationship that is built between you and those things that you are grateful for. For this to become a routine, a high level of discipline is required, and just like building or developing any skill, consistency is required. But you still must do it in your own way. You can only be taught to be aware of your own energy, past this point you oversee the building of your relationship with energy. It is your imprint. It is your blueprint. Whether you do it in groups or alone, be aware of the energy that moves through you during the ritual. Well, go on and practice gratitude. You can start now. If you are already doing it, do it even more and be one with it. Namaste.