It’s not too soon to begin celebrating Thanksgiving, a holiday which has humility and gratitude at its core. Our Canadian friends have just finished their annual Thanksgiving (the second Monday each October) and perhaps we can learn from them about the “science of Thanksgiving,” as some are calling it.
As background, did you know that First Nation or native tribes formally celebrated the Creator’s gifts of land and harvests way before European settlers arrived? And that French settlers with Champlain held thanksgiving feasts in the early 1600s in Canada? The science of Thanksgiving is now being researched by prestigious universities, with important implications for our health and welfare.
Canadian writer Monica Karal is quoted in fellow Canadian Wendy Margolese’s blog. Karal writes:
“Current research is… examining whether there is a ‘science’ to thankfulness, where applying certain principles yields consistent results. Researchers at Yale and University of California (Davis) report that grateful individuals experience more love, joy and enthusiasm, and are shielded from destructive sentiments such as bitterness, greed and envy. They cope better with stress, recover more quickly from illness, and have better immune systems.
“Internationally renowned gratitude researcher Robert Emmons notes that gratitude fosters health when the motive is to experience emotional and spiritual prosperity as part of a purposeful life focused on love and generosity, rather than material gain.
“I’ve found that practicing gratitude has opened my thought to the presence of a higher power. I figure that the best things in life, especially the beauties of nature and the joy of connecting with others, must have a spiritual source. Not some bearded guy on a cloud. But rather, a spiritual Source that is divine Life, Soul, Love. I connect with this Light, or eternal source of good, through Bible study and prayer, as inspired ideas come to help me see life through a spiritual lens and open up new possibilities.”
If you’d like to learn more of this science of Thanksgiving, Read More here.