A lesson on Gratitude

In the eightfold path given by Sage Patanjali, one of the Yams is ‘Aparagriha’ which literally means greedlessness. I mulled over it to understand it better. When do you get in a state when you have no greed? When you feel contented and that doesn’t come naturally with humans. It’s ingrained in human nature to ask for more in this illusory world because our happiness depends on our possessions. We are not satisfied with one car, one house, one piece of jewellery, and the list is endless. Instead, we want more and the more never becomes complete. One of the other ways to look at Aparagriha is feel grateful. Pay your gratitude towards all your material possessions, to all the free stuff we get from nature- air, water, rain, sunshine , beauty and a lot more. Also feel thankful for parents, family, friends. The key is to move your locus from what you desire to what you own. The path, then tends to be more inward looking than outward. And isn’t that what any spiritual science teaches! Once this lesson is learnt and practiced by us, people around us, children, parents, friends, colleagues sense it and and get infected. Isn’t it a beautiful way to spread happiness with the effort on self but impact on all.
Some practical tips to pay gratitude:
– Say or feel thankful before you eat meals. Visualize the entire value chain from when the seed (ex: fruit) was planted, watered, plucked, packaged, transported to your neighbourhood store. Feel thankful for all the people involved for their efforts to help you eat the fruit.
– Say or feel thankful to your cook- wife, mother, external resource who make an effort to wash, chop and cook the veggies to prepare a delicious meal to satisfy your appetite
– After you wake up in morning, go outside, enjoy the sunshine, chirping of birds, greenery of trees and colour of flowers and feel thankful to nature for such beauty
– Mentally thanks to all those people who bear your uncontrollable inhuman behavior that is displayed in certain conditions cos you may have unknowingly hurt them
– Make a note to say thanks loud and clear to all those who serve you- the cab driver who dropped you to your office today, the housemaid who knows exactly how you need your house clean, the person who cleans your car, the guards at your society gate looking after you all day and night bearing the weather conditions, the auto-driver who you asked to cover a short distance ride, the office boy who brings you freshly brewed coffee and many many more..

Money is not the only exchange we do with people around us to serve or get served. It’s the energy flowing through our thoughts, feelings and actions. It’s not difficult, we only forget and take things for granted. Time to take notice, be aware and act NOW.


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