Updated: Mar 14
Gratitude is one of the four mindbody pillars of longevity. In my extensive work with centenarians, worldwide, I found they share four biocognitions (mindbodyculture) that I argue are essential for their meaningful longevity: gratitude, generosity, admiration, and curiosity.
I explain the embodiment of gratitude within a model of cultural learning that can be applied to the remaining three immeasurables. First, what is the terrain that encompasses gratitude? It is a consciousness of receiving without expectation to give back. Rather than a quid pro quo transaction, it is the elegant enactment of graceful acceptance. The valuation is placed on the receivingness rather than on the gift. This contextualizing assigns equal significance to all gifts.
Second, rather than feeling gratitude dependent on the gift, we become one with the gift. This subtle shifting iinfuses gratitude into the fabric of selfhood. In other words, rather than solely triggering gratitude by offerings, the experience of gratefulness is inherent in the selective perception chosen to view the world.
Learning the embodiment of the four longevity immeasurables, requires contemplative reflection to assimilate them as operative consciousness, rather than transactions. Increasing competence in this recursive process, expands the horizons of becomingness to experience a world beyond the limitations of small minds that view life as transactions keeping score. This emotional accounting misses the humanity that goes beyond behavioral ledgers to determine significance.
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