Exploring the True Meaning of Thanksgiving
The emphasis of the sentimentalist’s heart has traditionally been on discovering the true meaning of Christmas. But the holiday’s immediate predecessor, by about a month, perhaps provides us a more telling revelation of the human condition.
Thanksgiving rings a considerably more profound melody in our spirits, one of passion, of yearning and of embracing the tenets of our higher selves, of our ethereal potential. We are, after all, not truly the characters we keep hidden; we are who we are on the outside, in the vast atmosphere of our expressions and our attitudes. Essentially, we become the characters our perspectives – positive or negative – have shaped. In the end, our lives only rise to the crest of attitude.
And that, in a strange linguistic merging of words, is what Thanksgiving is all about. It is the conveying of gratitude for the gain – materially, circumstantially, morally, spiritually and existentially— that we’ve acquired in our years. Thanksgiving takes center stage one day out of 365 when we mark the importance, ideally, of adopting that attitude of gratitude, as the theologians say.
The unfortunate part of Thanksgiving Day, if there were one to be found, is its singularity. Only one day. We have 24 hours to take hold of the eternal truth that we were initially creatures of sad fate only to be raised to heights of blessing and fortune. To put it simply, we have so much to be thankful for – if only we could bring ourselves to recognize it.
We celebrate the holiday’s undergirding with family or friends with food and feasting. We construct it into a grand occasion and we sometimes express our own particular gratitude. We rightly elevate Thanksgiving to its worthy pedestal.
But unlike all the other holidays, Thanksgiving reaches deep to grasp a part of ourselves we sometimes neglect or overlook. It is that wide-eyed wonder, that childlike embrace of life’s tender freshness and excitement. When we give thanks, we acknowledge life’s roaring opulence hiding perpetually behind the horizon of each of our days – as if gleefully playing some infinite game of hide-and-go-seek.
We discover life’s goodness, sometimes embedded so deep and hidden so well, and we express it to the world. That’s the key: thanksgiving. Giving of thanks. So, simple, but so complex. So profound. And sometimes so onerous, but so liberating.
Thanksgiving is about removing ourselves so that we can transfer to someone else that sense of moral appreciation. It comes at no cost: giving of thanks. Yet, when incorporated as a lifestyle habit, it reaps such wondrous returns.
When we express our gratitude we connect ourselves inexplicitly into the passion that fosters “the better angels of our nature.” We become the blessing givers, and our joy takes flight to new heights.
We at Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club mark our calendars to celebrate Thanksgiving with these sentiments in mind. We wish everyone a happy Thanksgiving and hope the tidings of the day cover the remaining 364 days of the year.
Members, come join us for a delicious Thanksgiving Dinner Buffet 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 19 in the ballroom. Cost is $50 for adults and $20 for children 12 and under. Reservations are required. Call (352) 629-6229 to reserve you place at the table for this glorious holiday feast. Catering to-go menus are also available. The deadline for ordering Thanksgiving catering is 5 p.m., Nov. 20.