Giving thanks or gobbling turkey?

By David Joel Miller

What motivates you today on this launch of the Holiday season?

Grateful to be alive

Grateful to be alive
Photo courtesy of Flickr ( leewrightonflickr)

Some people used to call this next month the Christmas season, now it is a pure electronics consumer feast. So before you rush off to capture and kill the latest i-creature, let’s consider what Thanksgiving is and whether we are really thankful for what we have or are we just craving more?

Thanksgiving is, according to the Century Dictionary of 1891:

1. The act of rendering thanks or expressing gratitude for favors, benefits or mercies. An acknowledgment of benefits received. It cites an older Biblical use of the word to mean acknowledgment by offering.

The illustrative text for this?

Every creature of God is good and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving.       1 Tim. iv 4.

2. A public celebration of divine goodness; specifically in the United States.

3. A form of words expressive of thanks to God; a grace.

The first U. S. celebration – 1621 in Plymouth by the Pilgrims and Strangers. (See the book Saints and Strangers by Willison.)  Saints and Strangers, Being the Lives of the Pilgrim Fathers and Their Families

My fun old book, The Century Dictionary, also includes a definition for a “thanksgiver” who is defined as:

One who gives thanks, or acknowledges a benefit, a kindness, or a mercy.

I realize my old Century Dictionary is now a dinosaur, full of words that are no longer in use. Despite the fact that each of the six volumes weighs more than my tower computer and my laptop put together, I still find comfort in knowing that there are good old words there, just waiting for another chance to be used by humans.

So on this day, with its historical connections, I just wonder if some of us could spend some time thinking about what we are thankful for and are we thanksgivers before we all rush off to celebrate the Black Friday and the Cyber Monday festivities?

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life.

You can recover. Your cruising along the road of life and then wham, something knocks you in the ditch. If you have gone through a divorce, break up, or lost a job your life may have gotten off track. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel that explores the world of a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

Other books are due out soon; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page or my Facebook author’s page, David Joel Miller. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at



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