Author Topic: Gratitude  (Read 17990 times)

negra orquida

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Gratitude
« on: March 10, 2012, 03:47:40 PM »
Is gratitude an important attitude / feeling to cultivate in our spiritual path? Why? Can we develop compassion or wisdom without having gratitude?
« Last Edit: March 11, 2012, 02:08:50 PM by DSFriend »

negra orquida

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2012, 03:50:34 PM »
Oh dear i'm not sure how to amend the subject of this thread to "Gratitude" =_=''

hope rainbow

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2012, 04:15:59 PM »
Dear NERA ORQUID,

My thoughts:

Gratitude is essential.
It is at the chore of "loving kindness".

Where does everything come from?
EVERY SINGLE THING I enjoy today is the result of the work of MILLIONS and MILLIONS of beings working hard for it, now and in the past, most of them even giving their lives for it, from a cup of coffee, to the streetlights, my toilet flush, the tooth-paste I can find at every street corner....
Let's take the example of the tooth paste. Why can I get to find tooth paste easily, what is the cause? Is it because I have 5 Dollars and because there is a shop open, even a night-shop open? NO THAT IS NOT THE CAUSE.
Yet, most of us think that our life of luxury is a simple as that, I have some Dollars in my pocket and therefore I can have tooth paste, I can have an ice-blended mocha at Starbucks, I can get a massage, I can get a computer, etc... The $ is not the cause for that, no it is not.
The proof: I can have the $ but being unable to get access to all these.

Our karma allows for us to have this or that, to enjoy this or that. The $ is only a mere gross manifestation of our karma, nothing more. It is not even the product of our hard-work. No it is not.
Why? Because if $ was the result of hard-work, everyone that works hard would be rich, but we know it is NOT so. We can also see people that do not work at ALLL and that spend more in a day that we would gain in a life time.

For everything we have, millions have worked very very hard. We have also work very very hard, but not in the way we think, not at the job and at the career... NO! We have worked very hard at practicing generosity, in taking care of others' needs, in always giving others the best portion oif food, in always putting OTHERS before us. That is why we can enjoy such luxury today.
(or in the lack of it - we also know why!!)

So everytime we open the firdge and get a bottle of milk.
Every time we take a shower, and it is hot water, and we have 3 types of shampoo to chose from and we have skin scrub products and scented soaps.
Everytime we have a smooth tiled floor under our feet.
Everytime there is the commodity of an air-con lift to get me up a building with little effort.
Everytime there is light at night so i can keep reading, working, watching TV.
Everytime I can talk to someone on the other side of the planet through satellites, fiber optic cable etc...
Everytime I simply type a word on Google and find millions of entries.
Everytime I get into a super-market and find exactly what I need for my groceries./
Everytime I take a bus, a taxi, a plane.
Everytime... it is because others have worked hard for it so we can have it SO EASY.

When we think of that, we stop taking things for granted, and we develop gratitude.
When we develop gratitude, we nurture a mind that wants to give back to others.
We want to return the KINDNESS to others. we develop LOVING KINDNESS.

biggyboy

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2012, 06:29:26 AM »
It is important to cultivate sense of gratitude in our mindstream.  Having grateful personality could lead oneself to develop better friendships and enjoy greater psychological well-being which in return would have a spiral effect on both sides.  It is in fact, logical to have such attitude.  One would see the world as a more friendly and hospitable place to live in.  Likewise, it has been the fundamental focus of most religions.  Why not so to cultivate such gratitude in oneself?  Without gratitude one would not have the true compassion innately to even gain enligtenment.  Hence, even it is for now that it may seem superficial but overtime, it will become innate and logical to cultivate.

Positive Change

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2012, 07:56:30 AM »
I would simply equate Gratitude to Grateful Attitude! Gratitude should be ingrained in us from the very basic to the profound. Basic in here means the very air we breath in, the very fact that we breath, we are comparitively healthy compared to some, we have a roof over our heads, we have food on our plates... Profound being, having a teacher/Guru to guide us, having Dharma in our lives, being in this human form that gives rise to us having the opportune conditions to practice.

All and and much more that we should have gratitude for. However, most of us conveniently "forget" what comes to us so naturally and if we think of all the little and big things we should be grateful for, we would spend the rest of our lives in gratitude!

Tenzin K

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2012, 10:26:30 AM »
Personally I feel that gratitude is appreciation or thankfulness and I feel it’s very important in our spiritual path.

If we don’t appreciate people kindness, love and help we are not able to show sincerity to help people others because we cannot understand the reason and the feeling.
How can we develop compassion without understanding/experience thankfulness from people that spend their time for benefiting us. It’s just like being selfish. Don’t care of what people have done for us and we just take from the people.

Compassion cannot generate from selfish.
 

sonamdhargey

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2012, 11:49:44 AM »
It is important to have gratitude, as this would lead to good attitude. One who has gratitude would not be greedy and always appreciative with whatever they have and would be far happier and it can also help with their spiritual development. People with gratitude will be less demanding and more caring generally. People who have gratitude are also more pleasant and always respected by others. Gratitude will have positive effects in our mind streams.

DSFriend

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Re: ratitude
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2012, 02:11:37 PM »
Oh dear i'm not sure how to amend the subject of this thread to "Gratitude" =_=''

Hi. I've amended the title for this thread.  :p

DSFriend

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2012, 02:28:37 PM »
Is gratitude an important attitude / feeling to cultivate in our spiritual path? Why? Can we develop compassion or wisdom without having gratitude?

I'd say no. Why?

Gratitude is essential for us to gain attainments. The quickest way to developing attainments is by relying on one's spiritual teacher - Guru Devotion.

Relying on one's Spiritual Guide is the root of ALL attainments. In higher practices, we are to view our Guru and the yidam as one. Because of our deluded mind and lack of faith, this meditation is one of the two most difficult to do in the entire Lamrim path.

So what is one way of developing this view?

- > Start by developing gratitude towards our Guru. Gratitude comes from observing and contemplating on the qualities of the Guru. When we think about all that the Guru is to us, gratitude will arise..the start of proper reliance on the spiritual guide for a successful spiritual journey.

jeremyg

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2012, 02:45:03 PM »
Being appreciative is the key to compassion. Without understanding what others go through in order to benefit others, how can we have the proper mind frame to understand why we help others.

I've always felt that Gratitude, compassion and love are very strongly connected. When  you feel a deep sense of gratitude, compassion, love, and joy. You are more aware of a greater connection to yourself and others. Thus you will be able to help them in a more positive and effective manner.

If we don't appreciate, then how can we give? It's like saying if we don't know why the dharma is good for us, then why practice.

negra orquida

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2012, 03:20:28 PM »
Thank you DSFriend for amending my booboo =p

From what I gathered, gratitude basically means remembering the kindness of others and sincerely wishing to repay the kindness of others.  Gratitude is not the same as indebtedness where one feels obliged to return the "favour".

The importance of having gratitude is embedded in the prayer Yonten Shigyurma - Foundation of All Realisations, namely in the 1st and 7th verses:

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Well realising that the root of the path, the foundation for every realisation, is to properly rely on my kind Gurus, bless me to do so with great effort and devotion.


--> I take this to mean that gratitude is a basic requirement to practice Guru devotion.  How can we put in the effort and be devoted to someone whom we feel we have not received any benefit from?

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Just as I have fallen in this sea of suffering, so have all beings, my kind mothers; seeing this, bless me to train in Bodhicitta, taking up the burden of liberating them.


--> One of the methods to develop compassion for all beings is to imagine (since we are just beginners and cannot SEE this yet) that everyone we meet have been our mothers in countless previous lives.  If we are not grateful for the love our mothers have given us, how can we feel that we want to stop them from suffering and get them out of samsara?  This verse also shows that attaining enlightenment and taking on the heavy responsibility to get everyone out of samsara is the ultimate expression of gratitude to all sentient beings.

It follows that having gratitude opens up the heart and mind to receive more blessings and benefits.  Studies show that people who have more gratitude are happier, have more altruistic tendencies and are more generous.

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I would simply equate Gratitude to Grateful Attitude!

I like this hehe.

Here is a video on how the opposite of Gratitude looks like... a collection of videos posted to Jimmy Kimmel in his youtube challenge entitled "I gave my kids a terrible present" where parents film their children's reaction after giving them a "bad" gift for Christmas.  Cute but "omg" at the same time
YouTube Challenge - I Gave My Kids a Terrible Present PART 2


KhedrubGyatso

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #11 on: March 12, 2012, 10:53:57 AM »
Dear Negra O,
I like your thoughts and esp  how it equates to Grateful Attitude. You have obviously been studying Lamrim. The direct cause for enlightenment is bodhicitta.
 In the 7 fold cause and effect method to develop bodhicitta , the meditation on remembering and repaying the kindness of all mother sentient beings is about being grateful. This contemplation is the cause for developing metta or lovingkindness, -the love that is without attachment or not driven by sensual desire . This  love  is not ordinary because it is conjoined with  a special wisdom understanding and appreciating that all our happiness came from others.
In order to generate true  gratefulness for all living beings, we have to move beyond selective assessment or viewing the kindness of others as momentary -like when someone helps us out of a difficult situation and we think he/she did nothing else to deserve more gratefulness from us. Such wrong view will limit us in repaying their kindness and prevent us from generating lovingkindness for all living beings - the cause to develop great compassion and the other higher qualities of  altruism which leads to bodhicitta and ultimately enlightenment.


Dolce Vita

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2012, 01:30:03 AM »
It is important to have gratitude. When we are grateful to others, we will appreciate with what we have and think of how we should repay their kindness. Without feeling grateful to others, we become selfish and very individualistic, we think about ourselves all the time and take actions that only benefit ourselves. We do not care about others and we will do everything to make sure we are ok. In the process of making sure we are ok, we create disharmony, arguments, fights among each other. There is no more peace.

I totally agree that to have gratitute is important for us to generate other positive attitude that eventually lead to altruism.

pgdharma

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2012, 02:04:43 AM »
We should be appreciative of what others have done for us whether it is secular or spiritual. We should remember the kindness of those who helped us and repay their kindness. Having gratitude is also important for us to cultivate the positive side of us like compassion, gratefulness and kindness. If we do not have gratitude, it shows that we are very selfish and do not care what others have done for us so how can we generate compassion. Personally I think having gratitude is important as it will create the cause for positive attitude which eventually leads to enlightenment.


vajraD

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Re: Gratitude
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2012, 08:45:37 AM »
Gratitude is one of the main things that are to be practice. When we are grateful to others a lot of things good attitude will take into place like having kindness, happiness, joy and all other positive attitude will be cultivated.

When we repay the kindness of other no matter big or small it generate the cause for us to have lesser attachment towards our mind, body and spirit.