Could it not be said that the first conscious realization in the area of personal development is the awareness that we create our own reality and even shape our bodies according to our expectations and thoughts – and this to a degree that is beyond imagination? In other words, all we see and hear, all we feel even, is never objective data and only has the reality we attribute to it.
At every moment in our life we have a choice between YES and NO, between complaint and gratitude. I would not hesitate to venture that gratitude is our main tool for remaining positive. It is impossible to feel at the same time authentic gratitude and the slightest little bit of negativity, of complaint.
The realization that we live in A Friendly Universe – to quote the title of the splendid, delightfully illustrated little book by Byron Katie (who is without a doubt) one of the world’s most outstanding figures in the field of personal development) – that awareness helps us to practice grateful living. For the universe desires our good beyond anything we could possibly dare to dream of; it is a universe where the Source is conspiring in every moment to bring us wellbeing, happiness, and to foster our progress towards horizons beyond our imagination. Therefore, how could we not feel deep gratitude for this strong assurance that allows us to rest in the assurance that all things, whatever they be, contribute to our good?
Then, why not adopt my favorite mantra: “Everything is a gift!” All the time, everywhere, 100%! Make it a strong affirmation as you face each situation or event, no matter how terrible it may first appear.
A few years ago I went through a tsunami that swept away absolutely everything in my life: my marriage, an iron constitution for over 40 years, my workshops and hence my income and, as the icing on the cake, a spiritual path of 35 years that shattered into smithereens. And today, as the rebuilding is almost complete, I can say: THANK YOU, universe, I really needed this drastic cleansing.
Gratitude is our main tool for manifesting the law of attraction. When I formed an international committee to help me with the legal defense of Roger McGowen (cf. my previous blog on Roger at http://gentleartofblessing.com/spiritual-guide-to-many-met-on-death-row-texas/) we decided to hire a private lawyer who requested a fee of US$120,000 to cover the first two years of his work, payable within six months. We then had about US $ 50’000 in an account set up for Roger’s defense. From the first day, I began thanking the universe that the money was already there and feeling the joy I would experience telling the committee that we had the needed funds. Literally from one day to the next, payments began to arrive at a pace 3-4 times faster than usual, and the day the total funds were collected (within three months), contributions resumed at their previous rate. I know that, had I asked for $300,000, we would have received that sum. Truly, the universe is fabulous!
Translated from a forthcoming book, in French, which will be published this spring by éditions Jouvence.
P.S. follow this link for an inspirational video on gratitude by Dr. David Steindl-Rast: https://gentleartofblessing.org/videos-that-inspire/160-a-good-day-with-brother-david-steindl-rast-video