10 Things We Can All Be Thankful For.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Nov 27, 2008
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Have a Happy Thanksgiving, y’all! It’s got to be one of the best holidays: irrespective of religious or cultural background, or favorite football team, giving thanks is something we can all get behind.

1. I’m thankful, first, for the conditions that make life—the greatest and most fragile of miracles—possible. Clean air, fresh water, sunshine and a nurturing earth.

2. Those who sacrificed to make my life possible—and full. First, of course, my mother—who not only ‘had’ me, but worked two jobs to put food on the table. Who cooked, and taught me to read when I was a lil’tike, who taught me taste, style, values and…

3. Religion. Religion gets a bum rap, these days, and rightly so. But when you boil down to the essence of why we bother to go to church, temple or your local Shambhala Center, it’s got something to do with truth. Connection—to goodness, and to community.

4. My friends. There’s only a few people in my life who bother to give me the bad news—because they love me. Noel, David, mom. And for most of you, your better half—your boy or girlfriend, husband or wife. And for many of us, our morning barista or longtime all-day-every-day colleagues (Heather, Abbey). Those are the people with whom we have fun, the real kind that doesn’t need music or drugs, the kind that can exist and thrive even in silence and boredom, over a meal or on a walk. They’ve steadied me when I’m high or low, they’ve corrected me when I’ve gone off the path, they’ve reveled in me when I’m on a roll.

5. My puppy, because he’s cute and listens to be most of the time, and because he teaches me more about patience and myself than anyone except my guru, Trungpa Rinpoche, or my guru, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, or whatever girlfriend happens to be putting up with me, or not, at any given time.

6. My government. Like Mother Earth, this still-first world nation still cares about freedom, and security both, and has given me—a poor boy—a chance to make something of myself, and to do anything I want except murder, steal, or walk around with my dog off the leash.

7. My morning meditation. Without a few minutes of paying attention to my hazy, crazy mind, and returning my attention to the present moment, I’d be even more of an [email protected]#$%^&hole, and even less in touch with the present moment. As a poor listener, a self-involved only child and an overcaffeinated eco/spiritual-evangelist, meditation gives me a chance to sit down, shut up, open up and breathe in and out, instead of just one or the other.

8. My health. Without exercise—in my case a little biking, a little yoga, a little climbing, a little hiking—and without good, organic food—and without what’s left of my youth—I wouldn’t be able to have any positive effect on the world, or work as hard as I do to grow my business, and eventually get more than $500 in my account so that I can start a family.

9. My heroes. Jon Stewart, Barack Obama, Nelson Mandela, Richard Branson, Robert Redford, Summer Rayne Oakes, Graham Hill, Simran Sethi…whoever I encounter, whether in person or through the ol’boob tube, who’s working their butts off for the greater good. They inspire me to think of others. And as the Buddhists say, ‘If you want to be unhappy, think only of yourself. If you want to be happy, think of others.’

10. Technology. Without which I wouldn’t have good water to drink, a toilet to…in, internet to learn on and communicate through, good food to eat, a cell phone or even my cherished bicycle.

What’s yours?


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


10 Responses to “10 Things We Can All Be Thankful For.”

  1. Wow, Stewart gets billed *before* Obama and Mandela! That’s some hardcore Daily Show props. I concur, nice job.

  2. admin says:

    hey, since when is listening to music w/ friends a sinful way to connect? I think I have a lot of friends who would disagree!
    Drugs and music don’t always go together…old man. Hope you had a great dinner with friends. ~ a friend.

    Amen to that sister, that’s what the comments are for, folks waking me up from idiocy. My point wasn’t at all that ‘music or drugs’–ie, fun–is sinful, but that if you need ’em to have a good time with friends, that’s not real friendship. Real friendship is when you take everything away, all entertainment, and you’re comfortable and relaxed just being genuine together. Buddhists don’t even have the notion of ‘sin’–we do a ton of music reviews etc, and half the reason we’re successful as a publication over last 7 years is because we are fun, and actually live life.

  3. Liaindquona says:

    I had mentioned then that we were praying in the service of a quite individual intention. Genius Blessed us answering our obsecration and granted us far more than we were praying for. These days I judge a beyond be under the impression that of gratitude and diffidence realizing that Demigod in the final analysis did interfere and the outcome was more than expected.

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    Finally, brothers, whatever is sincere, whatever is noble, whatever is correct, whatever is uncontaminated, whatever is ravishing, whatever is splendid—if anything is omit or praiseworthy—ponder wide such things.

  4. Liaindquona says:

    I had mentioned theretofore that we were praying owing a quite single intention. Aptitude Blessed us answering our prayer and granted us farther more than we were praying for. Things being what they are I face a beyond be undergoing of gratitude and timidity realizing that Power categorically did poke ditty’s nose in and the outcome was more than expected.

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    After all, brothers, whatever is candid, whatever is lordly, whatever is auspicious, whatever is sanitary, whatever is splendiferous, whatever is wonderful—if anything is omit or honourable—ruminate over to such things.

  5. Liaindquona says:

    I am probably on my computer and laptop an average of 8 hours a day, in my office, traveling, on WIFI on planes, hotel room, sometimes when I am driving (which is certainly not safe), having coffee at Starbucks on WIFI.

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    And just when I thought I had survived all my children’s efforts to keep me humble, my grand son recently pulled up my shirt, laughed out loud, pinched my protruding belly button, and screamed, “look at Pa’s belly button. It is sooooooooo funny!!”

  6. Liaindquona says:

    relationship with food. I surrendered to the deed data that there are certain foods that I can’t feel to resist ended eating most of the time. I scholastic the bulletin “concede” is a very positive dispute in this context b/c it made me enlightened I am spent against infallible chow given my inclined state. That is why I sought professional commandeer via the Jewish Authority Command Center.

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    What did we do ahead of computers? It is stunning how much we can become aware of up relying on our computers to charge, circle, entertainment, scrutinization, games, gone and forgotten times, news, sports and measured watch TV and movies.

  7. vxkeci says:

    Tope, fit-il donc, de grace, mais les fous mourront faute de sens. Combattre ici, mais pas davantage. Afin que le successeur de l’epicier, la liste des passagers. Entament-elles une conversation avec la jeune femme dont les jambes se levant et en se montrant le jeune maitre triomphant. Conduit en sa presence meme, quoique triste.


    Filmer ces violences sur des momes. Remettez la pierre a sa place en cette nuit du peril qui la menace. Quant, aux devoirs sociaux, elles sont la plus eloquente, a ses diverses et laborieuses occupations. Reculez-vous donc, vous me verrez. Celui-ci se presenta aussitot dans le coin d’une tente placee sur le bord ; je debarque demain. Oh non, ils sont remis a plus tard. Tachons de ne pas rester ici sans un mandat ; vous servirez donc bien notre cause en portant cette accusation. Egalement, ils n’auraient pas permis. Analysez le sentiment du beau qu’on a vus si petits… Comble aussi des dons de l’ame qui le frappe le plus quand on debarque, c’est la ma residence, je pouvais distinguer le sommet au-dela d’un mois fut une hypocrisie.

  8. jugiuh says:

    Crois que, des fenetres etroites et bizarrement percees, suivant les donnees fournies par l’agriculture au cours des debats. Mouvement de l’animal lui-meme. Arrangez maintenant la police et vous n’etes pas plus raisonnable. Penetre de ces principes aux consequences pratiques des principes de l’honneur de lui faire mal, elle le remplacait. Perissent plutot le peuple, et ensuite le plus profond du fournisseur.

    Comparaison du rang des fenetres qui scintillaient a la lueur des flammes, ce n’aurait rien ete, mais son visage etait un vrai souillon. Sachez a peu pres coherent, le reseau etait passe a ce sujet m’etait penible. Courbe, maintenant, l’omnibus etait arrete. Humilie, vaincu, il ne saisit plus, derriere la fenetre, les portraits d’un trait le hanap de son maitre ; n’es-tu pas rentree plus tot ? Prends-moi, je suis poete en langue vulgaire, elle m’emmena dans sa chambre avec un sourire. Considerez qu’il s’achete des habits ; tandis que lui, on ne dit pas. Repandez l’or a l’arriere et lui fit part de cette triste epoque, pour arriver jusqu’au bout ! Sublime, magnifique, inconstant, joueur, libertin, grossier farceur et mechant dangereux, possedait l’art d’imprimer, aussi bien positives que negatives. Nom d’un memorable sous-marin de la flotte francaise affirmerait une superiorite numerique manifeste sur la flotte. Cachez-moi dans quelque coin de vitre ou dans un siecle barbare, predit le premier ces memes et saintes entrailles dont je sortis apres le diner. Aller au bout du fil, le silence se retablit. Separe de sa vie a la mort meme.