November 12

GRATITUDE MONTH: DAY 12: “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”― Eckhart Tolle

Every time I write a gratitude list, which is every day, my abundance grows. There is a very old spiritual maxim that states: “What you focus on gets bigger.” Of course, we have all had this experience, if we are honest with ourselves and our lives.

When we focus on fear, we get to the point where we are overwhelmed by it. Same goes with the Ego telling us how busy and important we are. Our culture has fostered these two to a level that is unprecedented in history. There are a million drugs to deal with this phenomena today. Both are Ego-based and create a TON of anxiety. Neither is centered in the here and now.

So, we can be completely happy and content with living in this moment and recognizing and enumerating those things that are good in our lives. This is everything! And there is a TON of research to back it up. No analytical mind can truly deny the benefits and the shift in the brain chemistry and function. As skeptical as people may be, reading actual data is enough to convince even the strongest doubts.

So, why is it that people will most often ignore these facts and return to worrying and doubting and loss of breath and all the other Egoic ways of killing ourselves? Because this is the lesson we are here to learn. A spiritual path cannot be found in the midst of Ego and its children, Fear, Anxiety and Resentment and Anger.

OH! And those are the basis of the culture in which we live. There are cultures where people are so damned happy and free…without the things we deem to be necessities of life. They have little or no money, unclean water and a shortage of food, nearly nothing to possess and a way of life that holds almost no education or career opportunities, yet they thrive happily. What is the secret? They are not pushing themselves 24-hours a day to “succeed” or to build up a bank account or to “win” in a competition against others to see who can get the most and shiniest and newest gadgets. They are content to be where they are and are sitting in that space with gratitude and love. They know the secret of service and paying it forward and living with what is and what they have. Wow!

There is much to learn for all of us. First we must question the things we have been taught and learned so far. Does this idea/story/truth/religious belief/cultural norm make me happy? If not, how do I learn to see another side? That is what these steps are here to give us. Step 11 is all about Prayer and Meditation. The most important is meditation. I don’t need to ask for anything. Prayer is often like a child asking Santa Claus to fill his life with things that he believes are missing. What if the best prayer truly IS saying thank you for what is here and moving into a listening space with the Universal Power. I think that does the trick, at least I have had that experience. I ask for nothing and get everything! I love that!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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