To me, Thanksgiving around the United States has come to mean two things. One, shopping and two overeating.
Each year the "Black Friday" sales start earlier and earlier. These stores that are open for your shopping pleasure have to be managed and staffed by someone right? Who is that? Those are usually lower income workers who now have to work instead of spending this time with their families. A complete symbol of gluttony, this day is spent running from store to store buying buying buying and in some instances even "fight" over goods.
A simple search on youtube will give you tons of hits on Black Friday Fights
This year the holiday literally was here in no time. Usually I see boxes in grocery stores and collections areas to collect food for needy families around Thanksgiving. This year, I missed them all. I didn't see any boxes for collections. Perhaps I just missed them, but the only place that I found collecting food this year was at Truely Unique in Wilson, N.C.
This year more than ever there are so many in need. This economy has been hard for us all. Locate your local food bank. Donate some non perishable foods to this group responsible for feeding the hungry through out the entire year, not just around the holidays. Buying a few extra items while they're on sale and collecting them in a box and then donating them will not add a great deal to your bill and may be the only meal a family receives. I come from a family who received the surplus cheese and butter so I know first hand what it is like to not have enough food to eat. Giving back to your community is a great way to send out positive energy and provide for others in need.
I also encourage others to educate themselves on the true history of Thanksgiving. There are so many stories out there most centering around Native Americans sharing a harvest with the Pilgrims. Yes, there was shared food, however it was the Native tribe that did most of the sharing, see the colony that lived here was on the brink of death and would have died had it not been for Squanto. About 10 years before the Pilgrims landed in the "New World" Squanto was captured in what is now Massachusetts and sold to a Spanish monk who taught him Christianity and English. Eventually he made his way to England where he worked as a stable hand until he was able to get passage back to America.
In 1618, ten years later Squanto learned his tribe had been killed by small pox. While living with the Wampanoag he met the Pilgrims. Squanto taught them to fish and farm. Even after being enslaved and having is people destroyed he continued to give to others.
As we sit down to enjoy our Thanksgiving meals I hope that each one of us can reflect on the gift that Squanto gave the settlers. Think of how even after his treatment he continued to give out positives to the new arrivals. Think of the changes in the world today from Squanto's world. Think about what we as a people to give back to our world if we all sent out a bit of positive energy from ourselves to the world around us.
Sending light, love and peace to a battered nation and to hopefully a forgiving people.
Namaste & Blessed Be
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