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Gratitude Is A Toy Car

Gratitude is a weird thing.

I think my favourite thing about gratitude is that it obliterates, forbids self pity.

Try being self piteous and grateful simultaneously. Really, try...if you think to yourself ‘I can be both self piteous and grateful’ then you prolly’ need to ask exactly what gratitude is.

Self pity depends on excuses, on finding ‘reasons’ to try justify negative personality traits, bad attitudes, self damaging behaviours...what Satre termed ‘bad faith’: the denial of one’s own free will. Self pity requires a person to refuse responsibility and begs for anything that will allow the individual to remain in a current and dejected state of being. Thus, self pity prohibits movement; it imprisons a person and prevents development, spiritually, emotionally

...and gratitude does the opposite.

Gratitude is movement. Gratitude both requires and demands a person moves, spiritually, emotionally, even intellectually through processes of evaluation, backwards through the past and through doing so forwards through the present, towards a future.

Gratitude is like one of those friction toy cars kids play with which you pull backwards so that when you let go the car is propelled into forward motion.  And I think that is amazing.

LickingStamps LickingStamps 26-30, F 2 Responses Nov 13, 2009

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Lovely to hear from you, OnIceNice. Thanks for stopping by. I think gratitude requires evaluating the past (moving backwards); when we look back and recognise how grateful we are we are then propelled forward by that gratitude. *Smile

yes!...this is something i have not considered, and now that i do i feel totally enlightened! :) i love this idea youve come up with. it really is very true and perhaps essential to a more fulfilling life not only for yourself but others in your life as well. i do think self pity does have the potential to move you though instead of leaving you in this sort of static state....its just in a more negative isolated direction....not good. at first i was confused by your theory that gratitude moves you backwards. but then i thought maybe you mean when practicing gratitude you are giving up on yourself and stranding yourself and your own desires, in a sense, depriving yourself of something in order to fulfill someone else...a betrayal of sorts. however, in doing so, this against the grain ,denying self preservation approach may actually result in a more positive, balanced you. is that what you meant by backwards, if so i like it :). in addition, i feel the benefits of gratitude dont stop with self and benefit others as well. contagious in a way :)