Grasping Gratitude

    Learning to maintain an attitude of gratitude is at the centre of many modern teachings, and Seekers are encouraged to be mindful about every day miracles and be grateful.
    Giving thanks as an expression of faith is a familiar idea. Prayers, mantras and chants have been written to be said with meals, for the day we are starting or closing, and for other events which have kindled feelings of gratitude within us.
    In the culture where I grew up gratitude was expected, it came after wishes were fulfilled. I was taught that once I had what I had wanted, I would be satisfied, and stop wanting more. Wanting more was greedy. Wanting more was ungrateful, and any person who wanted more was an ingrate.

[Picture shows a well-used blue ration book issued by the Ministry of Food, and separate pages of coupons]
    Along with the other adults of that time and place, my parents had just lived through a war. Scarcity thinking and fear of lack were not psychological phenomena: they reflected real life experience.
    For more than a decade the people of my home country had been juggling few resources to meet too many needs. Systems had imposed rationing of food, fabric, fuel and other goods in an attempt to ensure fair distribution and equal access.
    The attitudes that accompanied wartime lingered for a long time afterwards, even as economies boomed and consumer society began to blossom.
    Striving for more was sometimes equated with selfishness. By creating and applying labels like covetous and greedy people were shamed for their desires.
    The idea that desire could be good and healthy was not part of the prevailing mind-set.
    We have all seen a toddler enjoy a special game or a swing and step back saying "More" or "Again", wanting to repeat something that made them feel good. There is nothing greedy or selfish in this, it is a wish to live fully and with joy. If we can maintain this kind of desire as we get older, we will surely unfold a happy life for ourselves.

[Picture shows a child on a swing over a sand pit. The child is holding the chains tightly and leaning backwards, grinning.]
    Gratitude for what we have and desire for more are not contradictions: they are the nature of life.
    When we call people materialistic we show that we are limiting our understanding to a narrow part of the physical plane. There is emotional and spiritual growth to be found in desire.
    Too often we believe in the world of three cookies and three people, where taking two is, depriving someone else. Life, however, has cookies for everyone.
    There are enough kudos from the boss, and there are enough smiles and laughs and hugs and kisses. There are infinite expressions of respect and feelings of hope and supplies of patience.
    There is always enough laughter, and there is always enough love -- they regenerate and multiply with use and sharing.
    Each day is surely intended to seek out more ways of teaching, more seeing people smile, seeing small actions magnify as they move through the people they touch.  There is plenty of the important, unseen energy that nurtures us all.
    How flat life would be without something to strive towards? Let's be grateful for all the impulses that make us seek out more.

[Picture shows a toddler in overalls at a fairground booth, leaning on a counter and reaching forward -- not touching -- a flower like game piece.]

  I have been practising Numerology and supporting clients through life changes since the 1980s. For a consultation, or to commission a chart of your name and birthdate, we can meet in person, by telephone, or by Skype Click Here