Grateful Living

I often find myself noticing the things that I want or wish to change and not paying enough grateful attention to what I have.  I gather I’m not alone in that fairly common human condition. 
On one level, it is these ‘wanting’ and ‘unsatisfactory-ness’ tendencies of the mind that foster creativity.  We ‘want’ to grow – have a more comfortable, prosperous life – become more informed and knowledgeable – build wonderful things.  We’re ‘unsatisfied’ with the status quo and strive to improve things and make happier more balanced lives for ourselves and others.  Without creativity, human kind wouldn’t have achieved the most amazing feats it has.  We’re an incredible species full of ambitions and curiosity to explore, build and create our dreams!
However, we all too often use these tendencies to foster jealousy, greed, envy, anger, relentless competition and negativity.  Which then brings unhappiness despite the seed motive of the wanting and unsatisfied mind is the desire for happiness.  Every single being, at its core, desires to be happy.  It is an expression of our True Self.
The problem is when we rest in the wanting and unsatisfied mind, we are often ungrateful for the present and the ‘what IS’.  So that even when we get what we want, we have fleeting happiness before we realize that we want something else.  It’s like a dog chasing its tail; even when he gets it, he can’t keep a hold of it and before long, he’s chasing it again.
An alternative is to express our gratitude for all life’s gifts.  When this becomes a habit, we begin to feel more genuine happiness that doesn’t rest on conditions.  We may still create and pursue change but it’ll be from a base of happiness, we will make our sincerest efforts and be happy no matter the outcome.  The passion and enjoyment of life will be purer.
We will recognize every ‘given’ moment as a gift.  Our life is a sequence of given moments that are the most precious of all gifts.  No one can take away the moments in our lives.  While we are experiencing the moments, we are alive!  Learn to be grateful for that extraordinary gift, to look around and see the wonder of the blue sky, the rain, the trees, the buildings humans have learned to construct, the adorable fluffy animals, the breath!
The theme of Ashtanga Yoga Paris’ 13-year anniversary was “The Celebration of Gratitude”.  We are forever grateful to all those who have been part of this path!
Thank you!

Linda & Gerald