Grateful: The Transformative Power of Giving Thanks

Book, 2018, 224 pp
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If gratitude is good, why is it so hard to do? In Grateful, Diana Butler Bass untangles our conflicting understandings of gratitude and sets the table for a renewed practice of giving thanks.

We know that gratitude is good, but many of us find it hard to sustain a meaningful life of gratefulness. Most people report feeling gratitude on a regular basis, but those private feelings seem disconnected from the discontent that permeates modern society.

There is a gap, Bass argues, between our desire to be grateful and our ability to behave gratefully—a divide that influences our understanding of morality, worship, and institutional religion itself. In Grateful, Bass challenges readers to think about the impact gratitude has in our spiritual lives, and encourages us to make gratitude a "difficult and much-needed spiritual practice for our personal lives and to make a better world."

With honest stores and heartrending examples from history and her own life, Bass reclaims gratitude as a path to greater connections with God, with others, with the world, and with ourselves. Grateful offers up surprising, relevant, and powerful insights to practice gratitude. It's time to embrace a more radical practice of gratitude--the virtue that heals us and helps us thrive.

“Gratitude is the undeniable beginning of the spiritual life. Diana Butler Bass offers us a superb overview of this virtue in our individual and communal lives. As she unpacked the various graces and challenges associated with expressing thanks, I found myself grateful to her for this deeply spiritual book.” -- James Martin, author of Jesus: A Pilgrimage and The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything

Bass writes about things that matter, and she does so with graceful, accessible intelligence. In Grateful, she guides us to discover how we can grow in gratitude as individuals and as communities. If you let this book into your mind, it will find its way to your deepest heart. -- Brian D. McLaren, author of The Great Spiritual Migration


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