Because JoAnn and I are planning to fly home to the States in time for Thanksgiving, I’m well aware that it’s North America’s busiest weekend for air travel. It does seem that the majority of Americans—no matter what their religious beliefs might be—agree that giving thanks is something to celebrate.
Underneath the active expression of thanks lies the feeling of gratitude—which is a powerful tool for Radical Manifestation. In this season I thought it would be appropriate to share this Afterword JoAnn wrote for my Radical Manifestation book.
I trust it will show you a way to feel and experience more deeply the emotion of gratitude that powers our acts of thankfulness this season.
By JoAnn Tipping
When I read the draft of this book, I said to my husband, “Where’s the chapter on gratitude? Isn’t that a big part of the manifestation process—feeling gratitude for what you want, in advance?”
“I’ve made reference to it a lot, but it doesn’t have its own chapter,” he replied. “Would you like to write an afterword on gratitude, to really make the point?”
Well, I could hardly refuse, could I?
I think of gratitude as that wonderful feeling of thankfulness and appreciation we feel when we see that we are blessed with something. It’s a great feeling. But feeling it in advance? That’s not so easy. How do you make yourself feel it when what you are trying to feel thankful for is just not there yet?
The answer is practice. It’s a skill, like all the other things that Colin talks about in Chapter 13. I learned this myself one dark and rainy evening when I was driving home from a Course in Miracles class. I had arrived there feeling depressed and tired, and I had left the class feeling much the same.
We had worked on Lesson # 344 in the Workbook: “Today I learn the law of love; that what I give my brother is my gift to me. . . . Let my forgiven brothers fill my store with Heaven’s treasures, which alone are real.” We talked about giving and receiving being the same, and how gratitude could arise out of either. Even though I was still in a funk, I decided that on the way home I would try to look for the “Heaven’s treasures” in my own life.
I felt a lot of resistance to doing it and it seemed impossible at first. I really wanted to focus on what was not good in my life as a way to feed my negative feelings. But I just started with what was there in front of me.
I am grateful for the rain. I am grateful for the nighttime. I am grateful for the car that is getting me home safely. I am grateful for the headlights that show me the way. I am grateful for my own eyes through which I see.
. . . and so on.
I began to recognize that I had so much of Heaven’s treasure that I was incredibly abundant and the feeling of gratitude began to sweep over me. I had started out very much in present time, but I found myself going back in time to things that I was thankful for in my childhood. Tears came spontaneously as I realized all the little things that, at the time, I had been very upset about, but could now feel thankful for. One thing in particular came up that I had always considered to be a disaster in my life. I had flunked second grade because I had hepatitis and was out of school for four months in quarantine. But now I saw the perfection in that situation as well, and felt the gratitude.
Speaking these things aloud as I wound down the road at 9:15 in the evening, toasty warm in my car, I was crying and laughing as the words of gratitude came falling out of my mouth, one sentence after another. I allowed no thought to get in the way of whatever came as a thank you or a homage to gratitude for my teachers, lovers, pets, traffic lights or bumps in the road. It was an exhilarating experience that filled me with joy and insights that may never have come out in any other way. It was an ‘out-loud allowing’ of love and gratitude that lasted a full 30 minutes.
When I got home I was in a state of pure bliss and joy. My tiredness and depression had disappeared completely. Simply through making expressions of gratitude, in spite of not wanting to at the outset, I had transformed myself.
Had I known about Radical Manifestation at that time I probably would have reached for a Radical Manifestation worksheet and asked for all that I wanted right there and then, for I believe I had enough gratitude in my soul at that moment to have attracted almost anything.
What I did, though, was pull out a piece of calligraphy that was entitled “Abundance.” The original text was by Arnold M. Patent, given at a workshop in September 1991. The workshop was entitled “Celebration of Abundance” and I was there. I would like to share this with you. I think it is a good way to end this book because it expresses the very essence of the message it contains. Read it often.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Abundance is the natural state of affairs in the Universe.
I release all resistance to abundance.
I feel the release of all resistance to abundance.
I open myself to receive abundance.
I feel myself sharing abundance generously with others.
As I give and receive love, I feel myself opening to abundance.
My willingness to receive lovingly from others is my way of supporting others in giving to themselves.
My willingness to give lovingly to others is my way of giving to myself.
I now feel abundance flowing to others and back to me.
I now feel abundance flowing to the Universe and back to me.
I now feel gratitude for the gift I have just given and received
I know and feel that abundance is the natural state of the affairs in the Universe and I give thanks for it.
Arnold M. Patent