1.) the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
You know the thing about gratitude is once you start being grateful...it just gets bigger and bigger.
I was sitting down to eat a bowl of oatmeal the other morning and I don't know about you but before I eat my food I bless it. In my blessing I asked that it be filled with light and that my gratitude for it and everyone who made it possible be expressed and felt by them.
Usually I leave it at that, but for some reason in this instance I went a bit further, I thanked the farmer who grew the oats, I thanked the company who processed the oats and put them in the packaging, the people who designed the packaging and provided it.
I then thanked the people that put it on the shelf at the store, and I thanked the bank for handling the transaction that allowed me to purchase the oats and bring them home, the people who made and sold me my car to get to the store to buy the oats.
I thanked the people who processed and cleaned the water that I used to cook the oats, the people who grew the blueberries harvested them, put them in the package, froze them and put them in the freezer section of the grocery store that I purchased them from.
I thanked the farmers who raised the honey and cared for the bees, put it in a jar and shipped it to me. I thanked whoever harvested the cinnamon, packaged it and put it on the shelf at the grocery store so that I could buy it.
I thanked the manufacturer of the glass bowl that I decided to use to eat it out of, and whoever manufactured the spoon and the pan I used to cook it with, and carried it in their store inventory so that I could buy it to cook and eat my oatmeal with.
And then I sat back and laughed, not only because my oatmeal was still quite warm after all that, but see, when I start to feel that things are just not right somehow, or that I am missing out on something and I start to uncover gratitude in my life I find that it is enormous, deep and wide; so much bigger than "thank you for this meal". And then I feel cared for by this wonderful Universe.