A season of thanksgiving, as I like to think of this time of year is typically a comfortable time of year filled with tasty food and fellowship with the ones we love. And there is a lot to be thankful for as we reconnect with friends and family, especially during a time of great anxiety and uncertainty that the pandemic has brought.
In this way it makes sense that thanksgiving extend beyond one day or weekend to become a season in order to make time and give due thanks for the many ways in which we have been blessed during a time that for many has been filled with tremendous loss and grief.
But there is an edge to our thankfulness and a season of Thanksgiving. In a world where many walk alone, many more are hungry and without adequate shelter or healthcare, it can be hard to sit around a table laden with food and goodies and anticipating a week of leftovers and sifting through countless recipes of what to do with leftover turkey, stuffing and veg. In a world where the divide between the “haves” and “have nots” is brought into focus; and how this pandemic has disproportionately affected First Nations and minority groups it is hard to sit in the comfort of our homes and be thankful.
But I wonder if it is because of the suffering and struggle in life that there is a deeper call and purpose to thanksgiving. Maybe our thanksgiving can extend beyond turkey to include a deep appreciation and posture of learning from those who are different from us, to listen to the wisdom of the elders and to walk more humbly with the Divine. In this way a season of thanksgiving becomes a way of life and living in harmony in the world.