The Zen Master’s Gratitude Mantra

Are you dutifully writing out your gratitude lists and keeping your gratitude journal? OK. Check.  Are these practices bringing you to ever more gratitude and an endless upward spiral of bliss?

If you can answer an honest YES, skip this article and go right to the great free gratitude gifts in the next section.  Everyone else: if you still have the same old stuff in your life that you wish would go away or at least improve, here is the key you need.

A Zen story (as recounted by Alan Cohen and others) goes something like this:  A Zen master taught a very simple method of enlightenment.  She advised everyone who came to her to adopt a mantra to say many times a day, under all conditions.

The mantra was “Thank you for everything, I have no complaints whatsoever.”  Many who came to her were upset with this advice and left disappointed or even angry.  But tradition has it that all who took this advice to heart and practiced it found grace.

Why it works…

When you decide to be grateful for everything, and all conditions, you instantly transcend the earth plane of opposites and enter the plane of spirit, unity, where all is one and all is pure potential.

From this plane of unity come fortuitous coincidences, miracles, and instantaneous transformations.

How can you tell you’re in the plane of unity and spirit?  Instead of “trying” to feel grateful, you’ll find gratitude welling up from deep within you.

Spontaneously.  Plus, you’re very likely to laugh out loud or at least smile as you let go of your habit of resistance.

One day last week, in a rush to get to an appointment, I spilled a tin of oatmeal, scattering oatmeal grains all over the kitchen counter and floor.  Annoyed and feeling harried, I decided to clean up later and promptly tracked a bunch of oatmeal onto the dining room carpet with my bare feet.”Shoot!” (that’s not what I said).

Time out. “Thank you very much for everything, I have no complaints.”

Immediately a giggle welled up from my heart, and I felt a release.  The frustration and pressure were gone.  I realized my core nature is happiness, and I experienced a deep appreciation of life.

Later that day I experienced two financial miracles.  But don’t say the mantra because you want the miracles, though they will come.

Say it for the pure joy of appreciating life.

Can one say thank you to a sudden dip in income, a loved one’s illness, or a car accident?  I invite you to use the Zen master’s mantra and let me know.