It is not Thanksgiving in Canada. We cleverly schedule it while the weather still encourages a state of gratitude - while the harvest is all around us and the sun might be shining. Today the sun was shining on the ice.
I could live without reminders to shop for Christmas (I might even get the requisite shopping done without the reminders). I could not live well without reminders to be thankful. Without the glorious sense of connection and blessing that comes when I am thankful, my life would be much less.
Someone was upset with me this week because he believed a study had proven that prayer doesn't work. The study had proven that prayer doesn't work the way the experimenters thought it might. That did not upset my belief. Prayer works for me. It works in me when I connect my sense of who I am with a sense of what the world might be. It works for me when it carries a group past difference to a point of rich and effective connection. The best prayers are often thankful - especially when they are prayers for healing or prayers for help. All prayers are hopeful.
Thanksgiving seems to me an inherently prayerful idea: a supportive connection between self and world. Today, that connection may be celebrated by shopping - a supportive exchange in celebration of abundance. Other days, other people, will celebrate it differently.
I could live without the shopping. I need to give thanks.