Dear Spirit to Spirit friend,
Quite a few years ago, I became aware of "Thanksliving" through many animal organizations, animal rescues, and sanctuaries as a new way of expressing, of celebrating in this season in which we give thanks. Thanksliving has been adopted by many kinds of organizations, perhaps as an invitation to reflect a little differently on what it means to be thankful.
"Thanks...Living": feeling thankfulness for living- for the life that is each of ours, for all those who share life with us this world. What if we really could embrace this in the depth of our being and feel sincere heart-opening thanks for each and every person, animal, tree, plant, rock and star. As we walk through our lives and touch and feel touched by those who live in this amazing life, in this unique and precious world...feeling enormous thanks. What would that be like, how would that change us?
"Thanks-living"... living in thanks, in humble gratitude and appreciation for who we are, who others are, for the privilege of being alive. Gratitude for the inner and outer abundance that is ours. Gratitude for "The Great Mystery", for That Which brought forth this world and all that lives in it and that continually animates us, giving us life. How moving might it be if we could truly live in thanks, in every moment.
And, Thanksliving as living as thanks, as gratitude, as a walking expression of the Great Love that we are, that is the Essence of each and every being, each and every plant and tree and rock and river. Living as The Great Love, That Which sees beauty in the heart and soul of everyone and everything. Who might we be if we could open to living life as ...
One place where living as thanks is alive in its most glorious form is at farmed animal sanctuaries. The place where some beings who have escaped, been released, or rescued from the unspeakable suffering inherent in the animal agriculture complex have been blessed to come to heal in themselves and in their lives.
Those who have received rescue know, deeply know, that they have been spared. And when they find themselves in a safe, compassionate, loving place in which they are seen for who they truly are, they rise up and become the most radiant expression of personal uniqueness and of Love, Great Love. Each and every one- cow and sheep, goat and pig, turkey and chicken- shine brilliantly as Love... the Love that we all are.
They live as thanks, as a living representation of Love and Gratitude. They offer their kindness and wisdom and compassion and playfulness to everyone who visits. They welcome us into their home and show us, ever so beautifully, what it may be like to live in an Eden.
At one of my most treasured farmed animal sanctuaries, Catskill Animal Sanctuary in Saugerties, NY, there is a sign that says it all.:
"Love is spoken here"
And isn't this what it is all about. Thanks in living, in being alive and bowing to the sacredness of all life. Living in and as thanks, in humble Gratitude, as the living expression of That Which is everyone and everything. Speaking the only language that matters-
the original language of all beings, all life. The language of Love.
In Gratitude & Love, Joanna