Folklore depicts Thanks Gving as a happy gathering of grateful white settlers (immigrants) and friendly Native Americans who helped them survive the winter. These immigrants were not “Pilgrims” – that name was added to the narrative later. Not all were looking for religious freedom. Some came to make money. Even the famous Plymouth Rock was a creation of local folklore. Native Americans showed the immigrants where to fish and how to plant corn (they were kinder to immigrants than we are), but probably no turkeys were eaten and certainly no pies.
Today only about four hundred Native American tribes have survived the massive, ongoing, and brutal genocide unleashed by these immigrants and their descendants. All of them were forcibly relocated (think Japanese internment camps, but worse) onto lands least desirable to white people. The Lakota Pine Ridge reservation is the most impoverished county in the United States. Few who understand all of this are thankful for it.
Now that we are becoming multisensory, we can look anew at the sentimental fabrications, such as Thanks Giving (and the Commercial Christmas), that perpetuate the self-delusions that we share. We can consciously create in our own lives real experiences of kindness, caring, and support. We can recognize “immigrants” (including ourselves) as powerful and creative, compassionate and loving spirits temporarily incarnate in the Earth school. We can learn about ourselves from our experiences and use what we learn to change ourselves for the better. This is creating authentic power.
As our family gathered for Thanks Giving (cooking a turkey and baking pies), one of our granddaughters sat at a table in the kitchen drawing a poster for all of us. It read, “Let our lives be filled with THANKS and GIVING.”
May you also choose to fill your life with THANKS and GIVING.