Nov 29, 2008
In the United States, the fourth Thursday in November is the
federal holiday known as Thanksgiving Day. Many other
countries have a thanksgiving day of some sort during the course of
the year. In the case of the US, it is claimed to commemorate
a celebration had by the Plymouth Pilgrims to celebrate a bountiful
harvest after a hard winter in which many of them died of
starvation and cold.
It is a mundane holiday, and we are spiritual people. What can we do with this?
This is a celebration of "the harvest" in the same manner as Lammas, Mabon and Samhain are the celebrations of three distinct harvests. For those of us in modern times, this might not seem so apparent to someone whose food comes not from a field but from a supermarket. But there had to be a harvest even if you and I don't experience it.
Another dimension of the mundane Thanksgiving holiday is the number of families who come together, some of them overcoming miles and others setting aside issues for the sake of the celebration. How well I remember trips to Duluth (Minnesota) for Thanksgiving. What a way to give thanks, including for family!
But it is a time set aside for giving thanks.
And the kind of thanks we can give at such a special time (or any other time we set aside) is more than just thanks. It is the basis of something which we can build upon! And build we shall!