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Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz: "What am I thankful for?"

Dear Friends,

I hope you enjoy a meaningful and uplifting Thanksgiving Day. 

I am taking this opportunity to suggest you join Rabbi Steinsaltz in an on-going discussion about some Big Questions: 
                                                                              Arthur Kurzweil

Recently, in anticipation of Thanksgiving, Rabbi Steinsaltz was asked,

"What are you thankful for?" 

Rabbi Steinsaltz replied:
What am I thankful for? 

The best answer is that it depends on the day, the mood, the period. 

Some days I am not thankful for anything, just angry and irritated. 

Of one in such a mood, expect the answer: 'I’m thankful for you going away and not bothering me with such questions.'

In a different mood, my thanks may be so varied, so abundant: 

for the blue sky, 

for the sun ray through a cloud, 

for the very miniscule bird that chirps on the branch, or for someone in the street who, out of nowhere, just smiles.

Formal gratitude lists—what we feel obliged to be thankful for, for life, food and water, company and family—can ring hollow.

Yet there are times – even in the darkest of times – when, granted a slight shift in perspective, I can sincerely say thanks for the pain and the suffering, and for being aware that I do exist, that I can suffer and that I can also hope.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz