Thursday, January 12, 2012

Let Us Be Thankful

Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn't die. So let us all be thankful.
-The Buddha

Looking back at 2011, these words of the Buddha probably do a good job of summing up the past year as well as remind us to always be thankful. Of course, every year when we look back we can remember reasons to be happy and reasons to be sad. Every year we experience new births, rebirths, conversions, transformations, and new ways of seeing things. Most of us also experience some type of loss. Relationships can change and sometimes fall apart. People we care about leave our lives or sometimes die. Some of us are better off materially and financially and some of us are worse off. Some of us are in the spring or summer of our lives and others are in the autumn or winter of their lives. Some of us are gathering in the harvest of our lives while others are letting go and simplifying their life. Doors close and windows open. The unfolding of life, year by year, is the great mystery in which we all live. Now we are on the threshold of a new year with new possibilities and, if last year wasn't so great for you, this year can be a year of new hope. A few years ago I saw the Rolling Stones perform at Churchill Downs. Keith Richards, a member of the band and a guy who should have died ten times by now, looked out on the crowd and said, "It's really nice to be here. It's really nice to be anywhere"! I share his sentiments. I'm really happy to still be here and I try to remind myself that these are the good old days and the best days of my life are still ahead of me. Start the rest of your life now by seizing the day and living with a grateful heart.

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