Thanksgiving......It's a holiday that is many things to many people. It has a colorful history that in some cases goes back to a time before organized religon. Recorded history shows us that Thanksgiving celebrations were held by the Ancient Greeks, Hebrews, Romans, Chinese, and Egyptians.
Throughout the history of the human race, people (especially farmers) in many parts of the world held Thanksgiving/Harvest Festivals because they believed that their crops contained spirits that caused their crops to grow and die. They also believed that when their crops were harvested, these spirits would be released to take revenge on the farmers who harvested the crops. Many of these early Thanksgivings were celebrations of the defeat of these spirits.
In the United States, the first Thanksgiving (the one we all learned about in school) took place in 1621. Contrary to "revisionist history", this first Thanksgiving included BOTH Pilgrams and Native Americans. It would be two centuries later that President Abraham Lincoln would declare Thanksgiving an offical national holiday.
Today, Thanksgiving holds different meanings for different people. For many, it means food, family, and football. For others, it's not much more than just a day off. Some don't celebrate at all because they don't feel they have anything to be thankful for or they don't like the "pagan-like" origins of the original Thansgiving celebrations.
For me personally, Thanksgiving is more of a frame of mind. It's being thankful for not only what I have, but for what I don't have as well. Since my time in the military and seeing some of the things I've seen, it has also become a "frame of mind" that I try to carry with me throughout the year, not just on the last Thursday of each November.
For each of you on this Thanksgiving Day, my wish is that you have a safe and happy holiday....celebrating in the way you choose, with all the friends, family, and happiness one could hope to have.
Happy Thanksgiving....Til Next Time...................
Originally posted 11-23-06 on Yahoo 360