Be Thanksgiving

Be Thanksgiving
by Briana Borten

“This past summer I became really clear that my #1 prayer for my life is that I want to be living in gratitude all of the time. I asked myself “How can I be in every moment, action, and word, a walking thank you card to the Universe? How can I be in the spirit of Thanksgiving all of the time?”

It’s one thing to take a few moments out of the day and write down the things I’m grateful for, which can be a great practice for shifting perspective (and I do daily), but what if I lived every day like my only purpose was to express the immense appreciation I have to the Universe? That would be the ultimate Thanksgiving. How can we live in that feeling all the time? That is a question to examine in this holiday season.

Since I started asking myself that question and bringing more awareness to this idea I’ve noticed that I’m seeing the beauty everywhere and in everything more clearly. I’m taking the time to slow down and be grateful throughout the day. I give compliments more often as I’m seeing the light in others. I’m allowing myself to receive compliments fully. I’m being kinder to myself, and honoring my body with loving attention. I’m taking care of my family with joy and love and feeling more patient than ever. I’m regularly finding myself in awe of all Divine creation.

So even if it’s just for one day – what if we all tried to see the light, to be the light, and share the light with others?

To live as gratitude, in gratitude.”

-Briana Borten

Wild turkey picture taken from home…

Walking the Mind Into Stillness

“Every day, I walk myself into a state of well-being & walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it. But by sitting still, & the more one sits still, the closer one comes to feeling ill. Thus if one just keeps on walking, everything will be all right.”

-Soren Kierkegaard

“We should take wandering outdoor walks, so that the mind might be nourished and refreshed by the open air and deep breathing.”

-Seneca

“It is only ideas gained from walking that have any worth.”

-Nietzsche

“It is a paradox that perhaps the single best way to still one’s mind is to put the body in motion.”

-Ryan Holiday

Snowshoes

Our Sacred Animals

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

 

“Don’t kill animals for glory, that makes you the worst kind of bully.”                                                                                                                     -Seth Kantner

 

A man is ethical only when life, as such, is sacred to him, that of plants and animals as that of his fellow men, and when he devotes himself helpfully to all life that is in need of help.  -Albert Schweitzer

“Our treatment of animals will one day be considered barbarous. There cannot be a perfect civilization until man realizes that the rights of every living creature are as sacred as his own.”                                                                                                                      -David Jordon

 

 

Peace

We shall find peace. We shall hear the angels, we shall see the sky sparkling with diamonds.

—Anton Chekhov

Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice.
—Baruch Spinoza

Peace has never come from dropping bombs. Real peace comes from enlightenment and educating people to behave more in a divine manner.
—Carlos Santana

Peace is not a relationship of nations. It is a condition of mind brought about by a serenity of soul. Peace is not merely the absence of war. It is also a state of mind. Lasting peace can come only to peaceful people.
—Jawaharlal Nehru

You can’t separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.

—Malcolm X

If you want to make peace, you don’t talk to your friends. You talk to your enemies.
—Moshe Dayan

Every day we do things, we are things that have to do with peace. If we are aware of our life…, our way of looking at things, we will know how to make peace right in the moment, we are alive.
—Thich Nhat Hanh

First keep the peace within yourself, then you can also bring peace to others.
—Thomas Kempis

With Love and Reverence

“Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.”

-Henry David Thoreau

“Love they said burns you and builds you!

But with you, there is no ash,

Just Light.

-Kamand Kojouni

“Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world.”

-John Milton

 

 

 

 

 

The Untrimmable Light of the World

“Every day
I see or hear
something
that more or less
kills me
with delight,
that leaves me
like a needle
in the haystack
of light.
It was what I was born for –
to look, to listen,
to lose myself
inside this soft world –
to instruct myself
over and over
in joy,
and acclamation.
Nor am I talking
about the exceptional,
the fearful, the dreadful,
the very extravagant –
but of the ordinary,
the common, the very drab,
the daily presentations.
Oh, good scholar,
I say to myself,
how can you help
but grow wise
with such teachings
as these –
the untrimmable light
of the world,
the ocean’s shine,
the prayers that are made
out of grass?”

-Mary Oliver

Song of the Trees

“Trees are poems that Earth writes upon the sky.”

-Kahlil Gibran

“Go outside and don’t go to a special place. Just go into your neighborhood and repeatedly, over and over again, open your ears and harvest the sounds all around you. Whether those are tree sounds or car sounds or bird sounds. Without judgment, just be present for the physical experience of sounds flowing into our consciousness. Do that over and over again and the trees will befriend you — or come into your consciousness and teach you some of what they’re saying.”

-David George Haskell

“Come to the woods, for here is rest.”                                                                                                                                                                                                   -John Muir