01 Jun Happiness is…being grateful
_ã–Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn_ã_t learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn_ã_t learn a little, at least we didn_ã_t get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn_ã_t die; so, let us all be thankful._ã _ã_ The Buddha
This article is about a way to help people experience more gratitude and build cross-generational ties that enrich their lives. Gratitude has transformational power described in the sacred writings, prayers, and teachings of religions around the world. It is also correlated with interconnectedness, leading to commitment and respect for others. Expert on gratitude, Robert Emmons shares, _ã–Social and community transformation occurs because each person_ã_s positive emotions can reverberate through others._ã The meaning of gratitude is far-reaching: it is described as a positive emotion, an attitude, a moral virtue, a habit, a personality trait, a complex state, a coping response, a process, an experience, and a journey.
Gratitude is fulfilling. As we are filled with gratitude, we experience positive emotions and we may even be inspired to act in more virtuous ways. In the metaphor of dance, kindness leads and gratitude follows.
Emmons describes gratitude as a human strength that is beneficial for society as a whole. Gratitude counteracts negative emotions and fills us with a sense of wonder and appreciation for life. Appreciation is most gratifying when it is expressed by active communication, a kind gesture, or written words.
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