“Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.” — Zig Ziglar
The 19th-century American minister Henry Ward Beecher said “Gratitude is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul.”
He knew something that many lose sight of nowadays and that is: gratitude is the language of the soul.
Tune in to any social media channel and you are confronted with status updates of what is wrong with the world and humanity.
We are so accustomed to negativity that we fail to notice it when confronted with bad news.
We think, “Oh that’s right” and go on with our daily lives without processing the impact of the events.
However, one human quality stands above negativity and has the power to improve our lives.
Gratitude is the unsung hero that is seldom mentioned in conversations, just like compassion or kindness because they are considered weaker human qualities.
Dr. Alex Lickerman writes in The Undefeated Mind: On the Science of Constructing an Indestructible Self: “Gratitude not only brings joy but also improves our sense of satisfaction with life to an even greater extent than either pleasure, meaning, or engagement.”
He says: “In fact, the strength of gratitude’s ability to make us feel good about life is second only to that of love.”
Dr. David Hawkins was an internationally renowned psychiatrist, lecturer and expert in human consciousness who wrote a compelling book entitled Power vs. Force. In it, he explains how our level of consciousness affects humanity.
In his map of consciousness he explains how the overall average level of human consciousness stands at 207, just above the base level of 200. It is only in recent centuries that mankind has shifted consciousness from the level of Force to Power.
What is more, just 15% of the world’s population is above the critical level of 200. That 15% has the weight to counterbalance the negativity of the remaining 85% of the world’s people.
Were it not for these counterbalances, mankind would self-destruct out of the sheer mass of negativity.
“Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” — Charles Dickens
I find these numbers staggering.
From the map of consciousness it’s clear that gratitude is aligned with LOVE. This makes gratitude the doorway to a higher consciousness that includes joy, happiness and inner freedom.
Gratitude awakens the soul essence of the individual to overcome limitations and obstacles.
Not only is it the window to the soul, but the gateway to liberation and bliss.
Gratitude bears the signature of the soul, while greed, hate and negativity are the underpinnings of the ego.
Feed the ego and you will give life to lower emotional states.
“Gratitude is like fertilizer for new insights. When you’re feeling grateful for what you’ve already seen, you create fertile soil for new insights to blossom,” writes Jamie Smart in Clarity: Clear Mind, Better Performance, Bigger Results.
However, it is not enough to read this and trust in my words. I urge you to experience the change in emotional states and note how you feel.
How do the emotions of anger, negativity, or hate feel in your body?
In contrast, how about: happiness, joy, inspiration, passion, and enthusiasm?
It was the late neuroscientist Candace Pert who said: “The body is the subconscious mind.”
Put simply, your body conveys the significance of your thoughts. Whilst you cannot escape your emotional response, you can change your thinking to influence your emotions.
Given that gratitude emerges from the soul, make it a habit to connect with this emotional state on a regular basis.
After all, it may be the very thing that contributes to a better life.