Philosophical roots of gratitude

Aristotle argued that we become what we habitually do. If we spend our days thinking of everything that has gone poorly and how dark our future appears, we can think ourselves into misery.

While we should pay attention to the many injustices to be righted, we can also make the world a better place by being aware of the good things it already affords. We can change ourselves into the kind of people who seek out and celebrate things we can be thankful for.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

  • In Judaism, the first words of the morning prayer could be translated, "I thank you."
  • From a Christian perspective, thanksgiving is vital. Jesus gives thanks before he shares his last meal with his disciples.
  • The 55th chapter of the Quran lists all the things humans have to be grateful for - the sun, moon, clouds, rain, air, grass, animals, plants, river, and oceans.
  • Hindu festivals celebrate blessings and offer thanks for them.
  • In Buddhism, gratitude develops patience and serves as an antidote to greed.

One way to cultivate a disposition of gratitude is to give thanks regularly - at the beginning of the day, at meals, and at the end of the day.

Holidays, weeks, seasons, and years can be punctuated with thanks - grateful prayer, writing thank-you notes, and keeping a gratitude journal.

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RELATED IDEAS

Gratitude: Personal And Interpersonal
  • The year gone by has made practising gratitude popular, promoting it as an instrument to enhance one’s personal wellbeing.
  • Gratitude is a complex and interpersonal emotion that feels incomplete by itself and has to have an addressee, a specific person other than oneself.
  • Being thankful for your own health, luck, good looks is a positive and beneficial action but is a feeling that can be described as appreciation and is generally personal.

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IDEAS

Gratitude

Practicing gratitude is good for our mental and physical health.

Several scientific studies show that there is a deep neural connection between gratitude and giving. When we're grateful, our brains become more charitable.

Being thankful and showing it to the others will enable you to live a happier life while making sure the ones around you feel happy as well. Gratitude is a sure key to becoming aware of how beautiful life can be, when lived properly.

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