On a recent day trip with a girlfriend, we were listening to a motivational CD in the car, one of those “power of positive thinking” type recordings. It spurred a conversation, perfect for pre Thanksgiving, about the difference between gratitude and appreciation. This particular speaker was using the word appreciate instead of gratitude as a basis for manifesting both intangible and tangible positive things in our lives.
We didn’t come up with any particular conclusions, but the conversation inspired me to look up the dictionary definitions (see below) and motivate me to ask for what I want and need:
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GRATITUDE [grat-i-tood, -tyood] noun
1.the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful:
He expressed his gratitude to everyone on the staff.
GRATEFUL [greyt-fuh l] adjective
1.warmly or deeply appreciative of kindness or benefits received; thankful:
I am grateful to you for your help.
2.expressing or actuated by gratitude:
a grateful letter.
3.pleasing to the mind or senses; agreeable or welcome; refreshing:
a grateful breeze.
APPRECIATE [uh-pree-shee-eyt] Sverb (used with object), appreciated, appreciating.
1.to be grateful or thankful for:
They appreciated his thoughtfulness.
2.to value or regard highly; place a high estimate on:
to appreciate good wine.
3.to be fully conscious of; be aware of; detect:
to appreciate the dangers of a situation.
4.to raise in value.
verb (used without object), appreciated, appreciating.
In the Tarot when I think of gratitude and appreciation the Six of Water and the Six of Earth come to mind. Paraphrased from my book:
SIX OF WATER
Attributes: Six of Water is friendly, generous, and kind. It is giving out of love. Six of Water is pleasure and charity. It is a mutual exchange.
Advice: Be grateful for having an open heart. Do not consciously give just to get something back. Reciprocity means that everything will come back.
SIX OF EARTH
Quality: generosity, triumph
Attributes: The Six of Earth shows the qualities of being generous and responsive. It tells us to be generous in our giving. The Six of Earth can be either a benefactor or a beneficiary. It indicates helping others without concern about getting something back. The Six of Earth connects and uplifts us. It is sometimes about needing more money.
Advice: You may be compelled towards generosity for no particular reason. You may receive a gift that you don’t expect. Allow and appreciate that your gifts will be valued. In many religions, giving assures a place in heaven. I think good actions will determine the future.
Have a great Thanksgiving. Be grateful and appreciate what you’ve got.