It’s Thanksgiving…Fuck gratitude.
I often get irritated whenever I’m supposed to have a certain experience. Why? Because I suck at having the experience I’m supposed to have. I’ve only ever had the experience I do have. No matter how hard I may squeeze my experience, my squeezing has never popped out the Ought-to-be. Not even on Thanksgiving.
So here we are on Thanksgiving. Are you fuck’n grateful?
I am deeply grateful… even though I should be!
My sense of gratitude is not a function of making a list of all the stuff I have that has been given to me or that I myself can’t take credit for. Even if I could get myself to make such a list, it could just as well make me terrified because it would also be a list of all the things I will, with absolute certainty, lose.
So what gives of this deep sense of gratitude I am experiencing right now? Where is it coming from?
Gratitude it simply the phenomenological experience of seeing what is, as it is…but just fully.
Gratitude is the result of the direct perception of the givenness of experience itself. It’s a perception arrived at, not by tracking the content of your experience, but rather, its substance and structure, i.e what’s always true about experience, independent of its content or form.
What is true for each and every one of us is that we cannot account for that we exist.
One day you woke up (gradually or suddenly) to the fact of your existence while in the very act of existing. You found yourself here, already begun, with a gender, a first and last name, a mind and body fully embedded within a socio-historical context. All of it a GIFT.
A gift you will never be able to repay. A gift you couldn’t have earned nor deserved and couldn’t have even wanted. It’s a gift in the truest sense in that you’ll never ever be able to repay it nor give it back, even if you wanted to.
I’m not proposing a historical event that you need to believe in. It’s always happening, the whole thing, even now as you find yourself reading this sentence…here you are already begun. The gift that truly keeps on giving…(sorry for the Hallmark-ism)
You, right now, can experience it. Here is how:
1. Sit there.
2. Notice you’re sitting there
3. Now notice everything about sitting there (breath, sensation, emotions…)
4. Now notice, even now, you find yourself sitting there, already begun.
5. Relaxing, even more, to the immediacy of the sensation of sitting there, and notice the givenness of every sensation.
6. Receive it all…be given to
7. Get up and see what you do
Happy Thanksgiving Everybody!