Gratitude The Greatest Medicine?
November 17, 2014
Substituting for a colleague who leads a grief group, this reflection on coping was shared by someone in the group. Written by Dr. Murray Feingold, it suggests that by focusing on how fortunate we are to have had lost love ones in our lives, we can help ourselves to feel better about the loss. But is that true?
For me, the answer is yes… and no.? That response will probably not surprise any TWD readers who have followed my reflections on how I have dealt with my dad’s death, and here is what I mean:
Gratitude, as more and more experts have demonstrated, is probably the single most helpful attitude we can cultivate in seeking happier and healthier lives. At the same time, I am increasingly convinced that healing also requires fully honoring the hurt and even misery we feel when we lose someone we love.
We need to honor the hole in our lives which loss creates, before we patch that hole with the gratitude and love which are the materials that help us become whole again.
Brad Hirschfield is the co-founder and co-executive editor of The Wisdom Daily. A rabbi, Brad has been featured on ABC's Nightline UpClose, PBS's Frontline, Fox News and National Public Radio. He wrote a long-standing column, "For God's Sake," for the Washington Post, and has also written for The Huffington Post and Beliefnet.com. He authored the book, You Don?t Have To Be Wrong For Me To Be Right: Finding Faith Without Fanaticism. Brad also serves as President of Clal, The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, a leadership training institute, think tank and resource center in New York City.
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