On November 24, family and friends across the United States will gather to celebrate Thanksgiving. The aroma of roasting turkey, buttery stuffing, and sweet cranberry sauce will descend into the streets as Americans prepare for a feast; traditionally preceded by sharing what we are thankful for.
A Meditation on Seasonal Themes
As it is told, the first Thanksgiving was celebrated at the settlement near Plymouth Rock. The colonists were struggling to grow crops in the unfamiliar environmental conditions. Many of them starved during the harsh winter, until local Native Americans taught the colonists how to cultivate corn and catch fish in the rivers. The following fall, the Colonists invited the Native Americans to share in a feast to express their gratitude.
Reaping the Harvest
However, similar holidays can be found even earlier in history. For instance, the autumn equinox marks the celebration of Mabon in the Celtic Pagan tradition. Mabon is a harvest festival during which thanks is given, food is shared, and libations are offered to the Goddess for fertile soils and good rains.
Whether or not you will be celebrating Thanksgiving, it is valuable to reflect on the season’s themes.
Harkening back to our agricultural roots, autumn is the time of reaping the harvest sown in spring. As we prepare to face the winter ahead, we take a moment to rest and enjoy the fruits of our labor.
Harvest and gratitude go hand and hand. We recognize the people and forces that have provided the conditions for our own growth and abundance.
With the ever-quickening pace of Western culture, we may find it hard to slow down to enjoy and appreciate life as it is in this very moment. While goal-driven mindset can help us to consciously direct our energies, we may find that in the process we delay gratification until we have attained or achieved what we desire and, perhaps, neglect to give ourselves credit for what we have already created.
So I invite you to take some time out and reflect. Ask,
- “What has grown from the seeds that I planted?”
- “Have I been allowing myself to enjoy and delight in the things I have now?”
- “What qualities do I appreciate in my loved ones?”
- “What gifts am I given through my relationships?”
- “What larger forces have allowed me thrive?”
- “What would my quality of life be like without the conveniences that I often take for granted?”
Here are some things the team at CultureTalk is grateful for this year:
- Andrea: Good Health and Family Love!
- Linda: So many things. I’d say most grateful for the health and happiness of my wonderful family.
- Julia: My soon-to-be-husband (in two days!) For being the best partner in the biggest year yet. And being the Innocent/Jester to my Sage/Hero, reminding me that if you let go, things can be easy. ♥
- Theresa: Mike, Craig, Matt and Grant. For constantly amazing me with their joy and love of life. And, possibility. The beautiful knowledge of the good things to come for all of us.
- Cynthia: I am thankful for an amazing team of believers who put their heads and hearts into everything we create, leaving a trail of beauty and meaning in our wake. I am so grateful for the way we work to support each other and the greater good.
Let us know what you’re thankful for in the comments below! You can also take our a scenario quiz to determine which Archetypes show up at your Holiday dinner!