Thankfulness and the Aloha Blessing Way

In Hawaiian shamanism there is a little twist on the idea of an attitude of gratitude, which is: that which you bless increases–anything you bless, appreciate or acknowledge. If you see beautiful flowers and say a blessing for the lovely sight you increase your likelihood of seeing beauty or your sense of blessing. If a friend does something nice for you and you express your appreciation for the deed, you increase the likelihood that you will have good, kind friends and/or your sense of being blessed.

It took me a little while to realize that it’s essentially different words for maintaining an attitude of gratitude. And the fundamental principle behind both is that, since like attracts like, if you’re maintaining an emotional state of thankfulness, blessing, appreciation, etc. you’re pretty much in a positive, upbeat space and that attracts more good.

Early on I tried to keep some sort of track of whether the specific thing I blessed increased although eventually I got the ridiculousness of trying to keep an account. I can say, though, that when I remember to say a blessing for every easy parking space or green light it does seem like I have an ongoing experience of easy parking or getting green lights. Mostly what I came to love about remembering to say a blessing or a “thanks” for everything is how great I feel when I consciously recognize the abundance of good stuff in my life.

As I mentioned in a previous post, my challenge has been to find something to bless or feel thankful for when I have a migraine or the unwinding muscles in my head have kept me awake for the third night in a row. I’ve learned to find that silver lining and, if I’m mindful, I can manage to find gratitude even in those times when things seem hard. The unwinding, for instance, means that my muscles are healing and the vice grip feeling in my head is on its way out, so I can concentrate on being happy for what the process is leading to instead of the painful part. I’m not always that mindful.

It may be the great challenge for all spiritual journeys. Whether you call it thankfulness, blessing or lovingkindness (or ….), success arrives when you can stay thankful or feel a state of grace no matter what. It’s the ability to step aside from your reaction when your boss just pushed your button—when you just found out your daughter is on drugs, when a tornado just damaged your house, when your head is pounding—and hang on to feeling you’re in a state of grace. When you feel blessed or thankful or even calm and centered through whatever life brings you’ve accomplished a major piece of the spiritual journey. Blessings to you all. I’m thankful you’re reading.

This is my post for ABC Wednesday.  Today it’s “T”.  This is also my post for AlphabeThursday, which is “B”.

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36 thoughts on “Thankfulness and the Aloha Blessing Way

  1. Blessings to you too! And the flip side is “what you resist, persists.” :) It’s not always easy to maintain that state of grace awareness but definitely worth trying.

  2. I agree that the more you notice and appreciate the good things around you, the happier you feel. I’m sorry about migraines. I used to get them as well, but after about a year of chiropractic treatments, i now know how to stretch my spine when one begins. It almost always works within minutes! Here’s the link to a video demo.

  3. Love this post. This idea is what I’m working on now called 1000 gifts. Keeping track in a journal of 1000 gifts, or things I am grateful for…. I’m up to 657. It’s so fun to keep track of blessings.

  4. I definitely believe that expressing gratitude allows us to have more experiences for which we will also be grateful. Very thoughtful post. Thanks.

  5. You know, I really am thankful for so many things in my life, but some days, I just forget. I forgot today, for example, until I read your post!!!

  6. I think at this point, i consider life every day a new blessing … and i do try realize it in the moment … not always easy … wonderful post!

  7. Hello.
    This life is full of ups and downs. I am just grateful to be alive for another day. Anything else on top of that is an added bonus. My wife used to suffer from migraines really badly. Through trial, error and a lot of RX pills later, she has realized there are certain foods that trigger them – mainly salt, sugar, cheese and foods that have a lot of additives in them – so she tries to steer clear of them and I have to say, her migraines are now very few and far between.
    The flowers are lovely.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Before every Listening Ear

    • Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. I know lots of people have migraines related to food. Chocolate is one that can do it for me. But the ones i have lately have more to do with the unwinding muscles in my head (post a while back) so I expect them to disappear when the process is finished.

  8. What a succinct and beautifully written link.

    I do this on bad days…

    But I call it my blessings list.

    I make myself write down every single thing I can that is positive…even if it ends up being only ‘a good cup of coffee and the color my toenails.’

    I really admire the way you think and write.

    Finding positives when you’re having a migraine must feel tough sometimes, though.

    A+

    • Thanks so much. A blessings list sounds great. I enjoy your writing — since your host doesn’t have a “like” button you don’t always hear from me but I do read and enjoy.

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