After posting another piece recently, Did Man Create God? a couple of commentors may have thought that I was going off the deep end, so perhaps this article will serve to clarify my thought processes a tad better.
Copyright: January 18, 2008 - Tom Hyland
Song Lyrics -
“When I am worried and I can’t sleep, I count my Blessings instead of sheep, and I fall asleep counting my Blessings …”
Fiddler on the Roof -
“A Blessing on your head, Mozoltov, Molzoltov …”
A Sneeze - “God Bless You!”
A Blessing - a good, or positive thing - something that is a boon, or gift, or present!
When we are depressed, or down in the dumps, it is usually because we are being deluged with negative, or bad thoughts or things. Then the Poor Me syndrome kicks in, and we keep piling on more bad thoughts until the load seems almost unbearable. It is at such times that we need that one little spark of Hope, to bring us back to a state of normalcy.
Counting our Blessings - reminding ourselves that the situation is not as dire as we thought - that we are really much better off than many, many less fortunate than ourselves - this is the defense therapy to help us to pull ourselves up by the bootstraps, and keep on keeping on!
As an experiment in taking stock in the number and kind of my blessings, let us consider a few.
PHYSICAL - I am ALIVE! I can see. I can taste. I can feel. I can hear. I can smell. I have all ten digits, and can grasp tools, pick things up, walk, run, skip, hop, jump! I ain’t ugly. I still have hair. With the exception of chronic knee pain from Bursitis, I am basically in good health. Oh, to be sure, I can’t do the things I could when I was younger - the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak, so to speak - nevertheless, I am Blessed!
MENTAL - I can THINK. I can read. I can write. I am good with: Mathematics, Science, English, and several other academic studies. I did well in Grammar, or Elementary School, High School, and even College. My wits alone carried me through over thirty years in Management, allowing me to provide a decent living for my family. Unlike the Scarecrow in OZ, I have a Brain - that is a Blessing!
SOCIAL - I am an EXTROVERT. I can sing. I can dance. I can tell jokes. I can speak and perform in front of audiences, and have done so, many times. I can shoot a mean game of pool, eight or nine ball. I can play cards: Poker, Pinochle, Cribbage, Bridge, Canasta, Rummy, Crazy Eights, Hearts, and even Old Maids! Every girl I ever dated was a good Looker, and the one I married was a Beauty, and that lasted for thirty-four years! In the past seven years I have dated several very nice women, separately, of course, and have no regrets on that front. I enjoy my relatively newfound FREEDOM, as well as my quiet solitude, when I want it. Pretty Lucky - or just Blessed?
LIFESTYLE - I am a wealthy man through my blessings; by God's Grace I have all I NEED even 'tho not all I may WANT! Retired, a little part-time job for “pin money” - shoot pool three nights a week, go to Harmony Pleasure Club meetings, parties, and other events, and am able to eat what I want, when I want, and how I want. Although I kiddingly refer to myself as “TRAILER TRASH” I love my mobile home, and in three more years it will be paid off! Love my 2004 PT Cruiser, which will require a little more time to fully own - but ole SILVER is truly a fine set of wheels. Is there a Blessing on my head, or what?
SPIRITUALITY - while I am loaded with it, I stopped believing in, or respecting so-called “organized religions” quite some time ago. Like all of humanity, I have a FREE WILL - and I chose to believe that if God gave me this brain, then He expects me to USE it. Accordingly, I tend to question a lot. After a lifetime of literally and figuratively PAYING MY DUES, I simply left the FOLD. I opted to no longer be a following blind sheep - if any individual, or organization is getting rich collecting tithes, then I avoid them like the plague. You might say that God is my co-pilot, and I don’t want or need any intermediary, or navigator. This provides a very secure and honest partnership, which works for me. I now count this fact as a huge Blessing!
NATURE - Aah - to be able to fully appreciate the Beauty of the Earth - the rolling hills, the green valleys, the songbirds of the air, the majesty of mountains, the ebb and flow of the tides, the flow of rivers, the gentle sounds of the surf, the love of dogs and cats, the magnificence of the variety of species of wild animals, the fish of the sea, and more - ALL provided by God’s Providence - are these Wonders of Nature not a fascinating Blessing to all of mankind?
While I am certain that many, many items could be added to this list, to cause it to be voluminous, suffice it to close with a quotation from Voltaire’s CANDIDE -
“God is in his heavens and all is right,
in this, the best of all possible worlds!”
Pax Tecum … Tom.