A Practical Peacemaker Ponders . . .

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Thanksgiving Reading
November 23, 2010

In Denver, the Vegetarian Society of Colorado holds an annual event on Thanksgiving Day, attended by about 100 people. This year I've been asked to take the stage to give a reading along the lines of a table grace. We make it non-religious, though, in order to accommodate a diverse audience. I post it here, in case anyone reading this might want to use it:

In our busy lives, it is easy to forget to be grateful. When we see obstacles in our own lives, in our political system, and in the world, we tend to focus on those things and overlook all we have to be thankful for.

But today, on Thanksgiving, let us pause for a few moments to acknowledge the mystery of life that appears before us as abundant food lovingly prepared, and as the fellowship of like-minded friends and family. We give thanks that millions of us across the country today are not eating a turkey nor having eggs in our pumpkin pie, that we are doing our best every day to sever the connection between our food and human exploitation, animal suffering and environmental degradation.

Let us use our power in our roles as friends and family members, parents, teachers, neighbors, investors, consumers, voters and active participants in life to promote harmlessness and compassion for all beings. Let us also include in our compassion those who are causing harm--being mindful that none of us is perfect--even as we work to end harmful action. Let us work for peace, justice, and environmental sustainability. Let us be the people we are looking for, and let us enjoy the bounty of the harvest before us.