During this month of November, we have some special opportunities to express our gratitude for all the precious gifts we receive in our lives. On Sunday, November 17, we will observe our Eitaikyo Service, which is dedicated to grateful remembrance of those temple members whose families felt inspired to donate to the temple Eitaikyo Fund, which exists to ensure that the San Mateo Buddhist Temple will continue to be a place where we can gather to hear the Dharma and joyfully recite the Nembutsu. On Sunday, November 24, we will hold the Shichigosan Observance at the temple for the families of children ages three, five and seven to express our gratitude and wishes for continuing healthy growth of the children. On Thursday, November 28, many families and friends will also come together in their homes to celebrate the wonderful American holiday of Thanksgiving.
While gratitude is a theme that we return to throughout the month of November, living in the Nembutsu, we find that gratitude is a daily practice that brings peace and joy to our hearts. One of the ways in which we cultivate gratitude in our daily lives is by pausing to join our hands in gassho and utter the word “Itadakimasu (I humbly receive)” before beginning a meal, and “Goshisosama deshita (It was feast created through great effort)” at the conclusion of the meal.Continue reading “Giving Thanks”