Nurturing Gratitude

Chers et chères membres de notre communauté,

Dear members of our community (English follows),

Les dernières semaines, j’ai travaillé sur des pratiques spirituelles : il y en a beaucoup et elles peuvent être très variées. Toutefois, je pense qu’on y retrouve toujours quelques éléments – la gratitude, par exemple. Se rappeler tout ce que nous recevons de bon et de beau dans la vie, tout ce qui nous est donné, c’est la base de la foi. C’est aussi la base de la joie et du bonheur dans la vie – les guides spirituels de plusieurs horizons nous le rappellent et proposent des pratiques régulières pour augmenter notre sens de gratitude. Cette semaine, nous aurons l’occasion de penser à dire Merci en nous préparant à l’Action de grâces.

Preparing ourselves for the celebration of Thanksgiving this week, it is good to be reminded that nurturing our gratitude is an important spiritual practice. Not just once a year, but every day practice helps to live more fully and more happily, even when we go through difficult times.

Interestingly this spiritual theme of gratitude can be found in all great religions, but even in contemporary attempts to “translate spirituality” into a secular world. Casper ter Kuile, a Ministry Innovation Fellow at Harvard Divinity School, dedicates in his book The Power of Ritual. Turning everyday activities into soulful practices a chapter to Thanksgiving. He describes:

“One of my favorite ways to offer thanks is to make a gratitude chain, linking one thing to another. For example, to be grateful for yesterday’s dinner with friends links to the beauty of the tableware, which reminds me of my family’s celebration at our dining table, which reminds me of my grandmother’s artistry – all of which I am grateful for.”

An invitation to create our own gratitude chains this week: they will make us see the beauty all around us.

Wishing you a happy Thanksgiving followed by a relaxing and fruitful reading week!


Angelika Piché

Directrice de la formation en français

This message was written by Angelika Piché for this week’s Wingèd Ox, a weekly news digest distributed to the college community.