Saturday, November 19, 2016



prompts reflection
upon the gratitude
at the heart of 
Thanksgiving this year..
If election darkness
fills one's being
and gratitude seems
contracted this year..
We need realize
as the day approaches
separation's illusory voice
seemingly amplified..
Until we find once more
with expanding gratitude
the gracious heart
in this and every
Philosophical Cafe Broadmoor
November 22nd, 2016
Topic: Gratitude
Gratitude is not a passive response to something we have been given, gratitude arises from paying attention, from being awake in the presence of everything that lives within and without us. Gratitude is not necessarily something that is shown after the event, it is the deep, a priori state of attention that shows we understand and are equal to the gifted nature of life. Gratitude is the understanding that many millions of things come together and live together and mesh together and breathe together in order for us to take even one more breath of air, that the underlying gift of life and incarnation as a living participating human being is a privilege; that we are miraculously, part of something, rather than nothing. Even if that something is temporarily pain or despair, we inhabit a living world, with real faces, real voices, real laughter, the color blue, the green of the fields, the freshness of a cold wind, or the tawny hue of a winter landscape.
To see the full miraculous essentiality of the color blue is to be grateful with no necessity for a word of thanks. To see fully, the beauty of a daughter’s face is to be fully grateful without having to seek a God to thank him. To sit among friends and strangers, hearing many voices, strange opinions; to intuit inner lives beneath surface lives, to inhabit many worlds at once in this world, to be a someone amongst all other someones, and therefor to make a conversation without saying a word is to deepen our sense of presence and therefore our nature sense of thankfulness that everything happens both with us and without us, that we are participants and witness all at once.
Thankfulness finds its full measure in generosity of presence, both through participation and witness. We sit at the table as part of every other person’s world while making our own world without will or effort, this is what is extraordinary and gifted, this is the essence of gratefulness, seeing to the heart of privilege. Thanksgiving happens when our sense of presence meets all other presences. Being unappreciative might mean we are simply not paying attention.
~   David Whyte
"Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen

Now I’ve heard there was a secret chord that David played, and it pleased the Lord, but you don’t really care for music, do you? It goes like this: the fourth, the fifth the minor fall, the major lift; the baffled king composing Hallelujah! Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah 
Your faith was strong but you needed proof. You saw her bathing on the roof; her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you. She tied you to a kitchen chair she broke your throne, and she cut your hair, and from your lips she drew the Hallelujah! Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah 
You say I took the Name in vain; I don’t even know the name. But if I did, well, really, what’s it to you? There’s a blaze of light in every word; it doesn’t matter which you heard, the holy, or the broken Hallelujah! Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah 
I did my best; it wasn’t much. I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch. I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you. And even though it all went wrong, I’ll stand before the Lord of Song with nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah! Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah Hallelujah, Hallelujah


1.  What is gratitude?

2.  What might be gleaned on gratitude from the Leonard Cohen lyrics above?

3.  What has the holiday Thanksgiving meant to you in the past?  Today?

4.  How is gratitude related to happiness?  To generosity? To abundance? To experience?

5.  A favorite Thanksgiving experience?

No comments:

Post a Comment