by PAMELA HULSE ANDREWS
I haven’t read or watched The Secret for many years. But it first came out at a time when I needed to take a good look at my life and renew my attitude.
The Secret is a best-selling 2006 self-help book by Rhonda Byrne. It is based on the law of attraction and claims that positive thinking can create life-changing results such as increased happiness, health and wealth.
It worked for me.
The book has sold more than 19 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 46 languages. It has attracted a great deal of controversy and criticism for its claims and has been parodied on several TV programs.
Of all the principles that The Secret offers perhaps the most compelling is being thankful.
Some days it may just be the moon, the air, the stars and the sun. If you’re not a reader of The Secret or you don’t observe the notion of being thankful every day, Thanksgiving should give you pause to be grateful for all that you have.
The Pilgrims and the Patuxet Indians who met in Plymouth on a very cold winter in 1620 are the reason for our Thanksgiving celebrations.
The Pilgrims barely survived that first winter after 66 days crossing the stormy Atlantic. 104 people and one baby boy born at sea settled in the new America that winter.
Governor William Bradford reported that when they landed they fell to their knees and blessed God that they had survived the trip. Their good fortune however was short lived because within four months, scurvy, pneumonia and a virulent strain of tuberculosis took the lives of at least thirty people including the baby born at sea.
Thankfully, and at great surprise to the Pilgrims, in April, when it was time to plant gardens for food, the Indians whom they had feared came to their rescue. Chief Massasoit of the Wampanoag tribe and Squanto, last known survivor of the Patuxets, taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn, barley and peas, trap for game and create a peace treaty that lasted nearly forty years.
The Pilgrims, who had pilfered Indian corn the previous December, may not have been deserving of help. But this unexpected gesture made the difference between survival and starvation.
To celebrate the Pilgrims and the Indians together fashioned a harvest festival that included an abundance of food and wine. To this day Americans celebrate this day as Thanksgiving. We bring our families together, we prepare a feast and we give thanks for our abundance.
Perhaps the most amazing thing about Thanksgiving was the Pilgrims and the Indians willingness to share and trust each other centuries ago. Our nation’s leaders could use a refresher course in this collaboration.
The Pilgrims dug seven times more graves that first winter than they built huts to live in. And yet they took the time to be thankful.
Buddha says: Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn’t learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn’t learn a little, at least we didn’t get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn’t die; so, let us all be thankful.
The power of gratitude is using the Law of Attraction to focus on what we have rather than what we don’t have.
Janet Grace Ortigas