November 15, 2012
This is the season of gratitude. I wonder why we have to be reminded with a day called Thanksgiving? We know that gratitude feels good. In fact, studies show that if you do something nice for someone, your endorphins (the feel-good brain chemicals) flood your body. The also flood the person’s body who is grateful for the kindness, as well as everyone who saw the kindness, all receive the benefits. Again I ask why we need a day to be thankful for all the kindness we receive daily when it feels so good?
The first documented Thanksgiving was conducted by the Spaniards in the 16th century. When the English settlers established a charter in 1607 they required that the day of arrival be observed yearly as a ‘day of thanksgiving’ to God. The Continental Congress in 1777 set apart the day for Solemn Thanksgiving and Praise: that at one time and with one voice, the good people may express the grateful feelings of their hearts, and consecrate themselves to the service of God. But it was Abraham Lincoln, who in 1863, during the worst time in our history, declared Thanksgiving a national holiday. He asked everyone to ask God to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.
We have always known as Americans that we are blessed to live in this amazing country. We still have divisions and strife. On Thanksgiving, let us join with the spirit of our ancestors to be grateful for what we have been given and with one voice dedicate ourselves to kindness and service. To once again do what each of us are able to do to create peace, harmony, and tranquility. We hear people say “God Bless America”, but I say that he already has. Now we need to say ‘Thank You!”
Happy Thanksgiving and Thank You.
Jane, Jill and Roxy