Gratitude is gratefulness, appreciation, thankfulness. Gratitude is a law of being, a law of doing, and a virtue. Gratitude is also the keynote of the fourth lesser trinity of Via Christa Degrees, which includes Fidelity, Obedience and Devotion.

Gratitude is the sign of a truly appreciative soul. Expressing gratitude or thanksgiving is difficult for the arrogant, grasping or stingy soul.

Edna Lister on Gratitude

Gratitude is the offspring of love and selflessness, a soul quality that you must awaken. Base your praise and thankfulness on gratitude. – Edna Lister, Love: The Highway, November 2, 1930.

Praise is the most common form and expression of gratitude. – Edna Lister, Your Royal Birth, January 24, 1933.

Express your gratitude in your praise of God, and love for Him and His gifts. – Edna Lister, Love's Qualities, April 19, 1934.

The disciples carried on with the Master's flocks as they had been taught about thankfulness, and soul gratitude for what they had received of the Lord. Jesus had taught them that praise increases your thankfulness, and that you must remember to pray and praise without ceasing. You can increase your gratitude by praising the other person, telling him how wonderful he is. – Edna Lister, Evidences of Truth, December 2, 1934.

You receive from God after you have praised to express your thankfulness and gratitude. – Edna Lister, How to Pray, May 16, 1935.

Gratitude's reward is the graciousness of Christed stature. – Edna Lister, The Enemy Approaches, December 15, 1935.

Words do not measure gratitude. No word is great enough to express gratitude. The deeds you grow from your roots of gratitude are the only measure of your gratitude. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, June 6, 1938.

Ascension is the process of substituting gratitude for selfish will and desires. – Edna Lister, The Rich Man Also, June 19, 1938.

Find small things about which to be grateful, and surely the law of increase shall give you hope. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, August 14, 1938.

When called upon, always give more than is asked of time, effort, love, compassion, strength and the greatest of these is gratitude. Give of this in abundance, lest you crystallize what you brought with you in the beginning. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, November 12, 1938.

Be in a state of grace, which is a state of full praise and full gratitude to the Father for His help, protection and for Power sent for you to release. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, January 2, 1939.

Pray in gratitude for what is already yours to build the line of Light between your dream desire and earth; build from the top down. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, May 7, 1939.

Fill your prayers with joy and gratitude for miracles past and miracles to come. A smile is your sign of the love of God, showering the world as the Master’s own compassion. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, April 1944.

Have immense inner gratitude always. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, July 9, 1945.

Constantly express (be) praise, gratefulness and thankfulness. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, February 14, 1946.

The whole of the Sermon on the Mount holds the laws to live by and become, including the twelve soul virtues – honor, love, joy, peace, harmony, agreeing and adjusting with the Light of God, gratitude, praise, beauty, obedience, compassion, faith. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 1, 1946.

To create, you must first have all-powerful, all consuming desire, then be the knowing faith that also entails gratitude to God. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, January 14, 1947.

You think you are grateful, but you neutralize its quality with rebellion. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, August 17, 1947.

The twelve virtues are honor, love, joy, peace, harmony, agreeing and adjusting with Light, gratitude, praise, beauty, obedience, compassion and faith. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, July 11, 1949.

Gratitude and praise return to you as abundant miracles. – Edna Lister, And it Came to Pass, September 10, 1950.

Do not be so caught in life's busyness that you forget "from whence your help cometh." – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, September 11, 1952.

The keynote of failure is self-centered complacency. Express more gratitude to strengthen your zeal. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, December 9, 1953.

Add gratitude and praise to your expectancy to increase it. – Edna Lister, What Is Your Gift? June 12, 1955.

Accept praise in gratitude, and forget it. – Edna Lister, The Lord Has Need of Thee, March 25, 1956.

Gratitude is Godlike. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, June 25, 1956.

Don't let appreciation stick in your throat. Gratitude is the supreme virtue. It's such an agreeable thing to do, and makes you and the other fellow feel so good. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, July 20, 1956.

Don't put a stinger in your gratitude. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, July 20, 1956.

Charity is love, as gratitude, forming a perfect relationship. – Edna Lister, The Bond of Perfection, October 6, 1957.

Let others take the credit while you offer gratitude and receive comprehension. – Edna Lister, The Bond of Perfection, October 6, 1957.

Gratitude to God is the beginning of ascension of consciousness, to open the body's vital centers for healing rays to move through. Do this, and you will recover more quickly. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 4, 1958.

Gratitude, praise and rejoicing are the only ways to keep your contact with God shining and bright. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, May 19, 1958.

Pray in gratitude, praising God, not just asking. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, June 25, 1959.

Gratitude and praise will bring a miracle into outer manifestation. – Edna Lister, How Can I Apply Law to My Life, June 7, 1960.

All things increase and are magnified to the glory of God where praise abounds from gratitude. When gratitude is the basis of prayers, you can have miracle upon miracle. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, February 7, 1962.

Boredom is a curse, a lack of life, and the only way to open new channels of life is to be grateful for what you have. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 30, 1962.

Let gratitude be your keynote of love. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 31, 1962.

To attain the full heights of honor is to move up in consciousness on gratitude from early morning to night, thanking God for all small things as well as the great. – Edna Lister, Honor Above All, April 8, 1962.

Increase your faithfulness and praise. Stand unwavering in gratitude while declaring good. Your reward for such devotion, such worship, such love will be strength. You will be freed from doubt and all manners of uncertainties and confusion. You shall heal and be healed. You shall love enough to make possible all things through faith unconquerable. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, August 7, 1962.

Be constant in directing your vision and in expressing your gratitude. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, November 16, 1962.

Increase your gratitude for blessings that God is already bestowing. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, November 29, 1962.

Hold your gains and rejoice. Without rejoicing, man is nothing, for gratitude is the first law of increase. All growth comes under the great law of appreciation, or gratitude. Gratitude and joy are the vibrations that keep one from slipping into the mud of self. You cannot rejoice if you are bound to the little self. To touch the vibration of praise, one moves into the high principle of joy. To rejoice and be glad under all outer conditions is the one thing to work toward, because your declaration, “This is good,” must be born under the spirit of praise and devotion to God. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, December 13, 1962.

You can make everything that comes to you pay world dividends when you are grateful for being so used by the Light. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, February 1963.

It is not enough to just feel a sense of gratitude for certain things, while dwelling on the negatives, the lower vibration, doubting, being afraid and worrying. Under the surface, these things roll around. Only praise will open this subterranean stronghold from the past, and make it rise as mist before the sun. You need only to praise to lift and dissolve all this. With praise, all things are possible. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, July 28, 1963.

Praise in gratitude, rejoice in appreciation, give God the credit for holding you and setting all Power into motion to fulfill your needs and desires. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, February 9, 1964.

Praise and gratitude for a miracle brings it into outer manifestation. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, November 30, 1964.

Praise is the only thing that starts faith, the fuel on which you run. Praise is your eye salve. Eye trouble indicates a lack of appreciation and gratitude. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, May 13, 1965.

Maintain a soul vibration of praise and gratitude for the opportunity to be rebuilt and the ability to lend the self to the Power as an instrument. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, January 19, 1966.

While she was lifting her lines of Light, Edna Miriam suddenly saw that she had not supplied the praise and gratitude for those receiving the miracles. Little dark vacuums had formed, like grapes of wrath. The way to lift them is to think for each, "I love You, Father. Father, I thank You." If you love enough, spheres of golden Light fill all the auras of all the people you have lifted. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, May 23, 1966.

All that is required of you is praise and to look up, praise and thanks, praise and giving of thanks for everyone who is ungrateful – fill their lives. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, June 3, 1966.

Continue to count each miracle and blessing, for gratitude, appreciation and dedication in praise for the miracles bring more miracles. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, October 14, 1966.

You can always express greater rejoicing and gratitude, though it is only a "Thank You, Father." You have no idea of the greatness of the Power it releases and the thankfulness, which makes up for the past as payments on what you owe. One day’s rejoicing earns new credits and pays for the old. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, February 16, 1967.

Use the terms "gratitude" and "grateful" with others. You can well up in gratitude only for what God has already given you. – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 10, 1967.

Be grateful for what you have, but know that there is more where this came from. Be persistent, expect more, ever more. If you want health, think, speak, be grateful for and expect health. You, the Christed one, are unlimited and all-powerful. Your consciousness changes. You must continuously eliminate the old. If you hang onto it, it merges with the new and drags it down. Declare, "I AM a new creation in Christ. I AM what I really am. I AM upright, filled with inspiration." – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, March 13, 1968.

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Treatment for Gratitude

To treat for gratitude and awareness for yourself or others, broadcast, using the clockwise Rotary Treatment for Balance and Vigor: "Name, be aware! Be appreciative!" – Edna Lister, Unpublished Papers, December 4, 1964.

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Edna Lister created this Bible study outline for March 20, 1937. Scripture: Acts 16:16-28.

Imprisoned, Paul and Silas used prayer, praise and singing to stand steadfastly loyal to God in the Light.

Gratitude is a soul quality. Joy is a heart quality. Gratitude increases, and joy releases.

Gratitude increases joy's fervency, and fuels desire to burn brightly. Joy releases ardor. Faith is the power line over which spiritual substance travels.

Joy's depth is determined by its fervency. Gratitude's depth is determined by the depth of joy. Faith's power is determined by gratitude's depth. Gratitude, joy and faith determine your success, which equals your steadfastness of purpose.

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Edna Lister created this sermon outline for November 21, 1937. Scripture: Acts 16:14-40.

A certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshiped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide there. And she constrained us. And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour. And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers, and brought them to the magistrates, saying, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city, and teach customs, which are not lawful for us to receive, neither to observe, being Romans. And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them. And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely: who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks. And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed. And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled. But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here. Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, and brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway. And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house. And when it was day, the magistrates sent the sergeants, saying, Let those men go. And the keeper of the prison told this saying to Paul, The magistrates have sent to let you go: now therefore depart, and go in peace. But Paul said unto them, They have beaten us openly uncondemned, being Romans, and have cast us into prison; and now do they thrust us out privily? Nay verily; but let them come themselves and fetch us out. And the sergeants told these words unto the magistrates: and they feared, when they heard that they were Romans. And they came and besought them, and brought them out, and desired them to depart out of the city. And they went out of the prison, and entered into the house of Lydia: and when they had seen the brethren, they comforted them, and departed. – Acts 16:14-40.

Because someone could no longer make money, Paul and Silas were beaten and cast into prison as trouble-making Jews. Paul was a Roman citizen, and Silas was the apostle who accompanied him.

While in prison, they prayed and sang praises unto God. Gratitude is the greatest of soul qualities. Completely lacking in destructive character, it is born of a perfect balance of Light, wisdom and substance.

Joy is the Light you bring with you and release on earth. Voiced praise is like planting sturdy seeds that will come up in spring.

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Count Your Blessings in Advance

This Linda Mihalic transcript is dated October 20, 2004.

A Pioneering Mystic counts his blessings in advance. When a situation arises, consciously choose your course of action to set in motion the desired effect, the action resulting from your choice. What you do causes something else to happen. Your choice either causes an action or is just a reaction.

Unfortunately, most people usually don’t choose consciously, but unconsciously react. As one wit said, “The brain disengages while the tongue engages.” Most people don’t think about what they are saying, or about how their word-action will strike another to react. They just talk to be heard. This is a universal ailment: Everyone has idle word debts to pay.

When confronted, you may react from the self, thus bringing the effect of your unconscious reactions down on your own head. This is how you precipitate your own debts. Precipitation is the “action or process of precipitating a substance from a solution (chemistry); rain, snow, sleet, or hail that falls to the ground; the fact or quality of acting suddenly and rashly.” Your debt rains down on you.

The problem isn’t how you are using desire, thinking and imagination, but which part of you is using those great tools. Is soul choosing, or is self reacting? Choice is conscious, but reactions are unconscious. If you allow self to run the show, you must face one important fact: That was your first poor choice. You are in default.

If you defaulted on a loan, the bank would call it due. You then must pay the whole amount. Either you make it good or you could be forced into bankruptcy. Then your creditors seize and liquidate your assets to pay the debt. If you failed to make house payments, the bank would foreclose your mortgage and take your house.

In terms of spiritual debt, that is exactly what happens to some people. When God calls your debt due, you must pay it. Some people lose their bodies this way. We all know some laws that apply. These may sound familiar."Only my own can come to me" is a spiritual law that means what you sent out, will return to you. When it does, you cannot say, "I don’t deserve this," because only what you send out can return to you. Only what you have done, said or thought can return through other people’s actions, or from the world in some way. This law works no other way.

Another law that people don’t like to remember is, "I am responsible for my every thought, my every word, my every act, conscious or unconscious." Clearly, consciousness is choosing the better course of action. Some people seem to have more trouble with responsibility than others. You can see it in operation every day. Some people simply haven’t got a clue. "Boy, he’s clueless.” "She just never gets it." You know it, recognize it, can see it and can identify it, but usually don’t properly name the "it" that they’re not getting. Why aren’t they getting it when you do? Why aren’t you getting it when everyone else does?

Here’s the reason, some people are introspective and others are not. Our answer is introspection. Introspection is not a God-given faculty; it means contemplation of one’s own thoughts, feelings and sensation. It means self-examination. Self examination is at the heart of every technique you practice on the Via Christa. You are supposed to know who you are, why you want to choose the thing you want to choose, and how well that will or will not get you where you want to go.

Introspection is a requisite of ascension in consciousness. One of the first great teachers of Ascension on earth, Pythagoras, had “Know thyself” inscribed above the gates of his school in Crotona, Sicily. If you do not know your self, you don’t know much at all. Ignorance is exactly how self can betray you. You can know what part of you is doing what only if you practice introspection. Is my self or is my soul running the show?

You build the habit of introspection over many lifetimes, or you don’t. Introspection is like a muscle; you must exercise it, or it’s flabby. If it’s flabby, your mouth is constantly engaged without the brain being hooked up, and you are always creating another rotten mess of idle word debts. "Chickens always come home to roost" is an old kitchen proverb. I’d rather not have a chicken, but a beautiful white dove. I certainly don’t want any more black crows! Examine what’s been landing on your doorstep. If you never look inside, you will never learn to recognize your own motives. Without introspection, you cannot fulfill the command of "Know thyself."

The Value of Silence: Pythagoras required students to spend three years in utter silence. Most people can’t remain silent for even a few minutes. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have terms like "chatterbox." So many people are wired for sound, on the phone or listening to music. This is nothing more than a distraction to muffle the voice of self. It only works temporarily, while the music lasts. When you pull the earplugs out, you must listen to either the world or your self.

Three years in the silence would definitely help you to understand the nature of the voice you are listening to inside your head. It’s not coming from someone else out in the world, but is self talking. Usually it’s an incessant flow, all self; self is a whiner, a complainer, a disgruntled blamer. Self compares everyone and what they’re doing to what it wants. It doesn’t do you much good, but steals your happiness and joy.

You can learn about self only in the golden silence and practicing is how you train the self to submit to your soul. The golden silence costs nothing more than the time and the effort you spend dwelling it. Without a discipline like the silence in your spiritual armory, you can’t expect to get very far. If you cannot enter the silence instantly, you haven’t practiced enough introspection, and you don’t "get it." It’s free but you don’t take it. A Pioneering Mystic who practices the silence can hear telepathically. The spiritual faculties of seeing and hearing don’t come like trick or treat candy – "Ding-dong, God, I’m here." You must perform the trick of discipline and the exercise of entering the silence. Only then can you reap the reward of every spiritual gift that is awaiting you.

Edna Lister said that the fruit of the Spirit won’t fall into your lap, and if it did, it would be rotten. You must pick these fruits from the Tree of Life, the Tree of Law, which has been there forever, as has the silence. You can learn how to stop the voice of self and to truly hear the voice of conscience, super-conscious mind, God, your guardian angel, call it what you will. You can’t possibly hear anything else if you are listening to self.

The silence is just that, a place where nothing stands between you and God. You don’t think about what bothers you if you are in the silence. You attempt to be quiet (notice we are avoiding the word "try" here because most people just "try" to do it). So many people so often say, "It’s too hard" – these are the words of a nine-year-old. It’s hard for a six-year-old. Is it that hard for someone in their thirties or older? It ought not to be, but it is.

The earlier you learn to enter the silence, the better off you will be. To establish this habit and soul discipline before you turn twenty-eight is a highly coveted conquest, because then you have self in hand. Otherwise, you must struggle through the next thirty-year cycle. Discipline remains at the heart of the problem. God is with you. He is always looking and listening. Many people don’t believe this; others seem to think that God doesn’t have a clue about what’s going on out here. They think He doesn’t get it. God gets it, but we don’t.

You must be all things to yourself, learn many skills, have much discipline and be willing really to work. If you want working spiritual faculties, you must be prepared to work, because you must impose those disciplines on your self every day. Unless you can command self, you can command nothing else. No matter what you desire in life, if you cannot command your self, you won’t get very far.

Becoming a Conduit of Power: The top of the head is the crown center in the desire body, and the site of the thousand-petaled lotus of the mental body. A vital center is like a wheel that accelerates you spiritual metabolism. The lotus center opens to the Light from above. When you open the crown, the other vital centers and lotus centers accelerate, which affects the physical. The mental faculties become supercharged and open to the soul faculties – illumination, intuition, spiritual seeing and hearing. Opening the crown heals you, unifies your consciousness, and releases more and a higher quality of Power through you as Light.

God sits back to observe what you will do with a great release of Power. What will you choose? Will you act according to the dictates of the self or of the soul? If you choose to let self rule in continued, unconscious reactions, doing as you will and as you please, never counting the cost, then your debt falls due. This can take many forms, most of which are unpleasant. Declaring things a catastrophe, awful, or terrible, is a curse, so name the so-called catastrophes merely unpleasant. The unpleasant things include illness, loss, humiliation, and accidents, because the Divine Power-as-Light that you have misused must return as force. Mind and Substance and Power are all one; if you misuse the one, you have misused all three. The effects of misuse are this: Mind forgets, Substance becomes diseased, Power becomes force, which you must then lift through the physical body, car or house, or some other material symbol of your being.

If you choose to do well, you are a good ruler in your sphere of influence. You can earn great responsibility and honor, and be increased in every way.

To be in the body and not be driven by self is an absolute struggle, because the body is a chemical stew. When you are young, the hormones are blowing right through your system. Nothing in the world is as urgent as getting what you want. This is being a bushy-tailed squirrel-like Adept. Youth act like little squirrels, running back and forth, jumping from tree to tree, gathering their nuts. Everyone does it or did it. The voice inside is always saying, “I want, I want, I want. I don’t want to put up with this. I want that! I want that, and this, too.” Self always feels cheated, so it accumulates whatever it can. Self collects and piles it up, then your heirs must get rid of it all.

You are no better than your last choice, or your next choice. You are always in the Valley of Decision. You choose with every breath you take. Most of us choose God and to do His Will. Your choices last year dictated the tests and initiations you meet this year. Your choices now dictate your next initiatory cycle, and it’s all performance-based. Heaven runs on Management by Objective. You tell God what you expect to do, then you must do it. If you do not perform up to your stated objectives, you create a debt you must pay.

Every good word you give is a blessing. Count your blessings! Not the ones you’ve received, but the ones you’ve given. This is so simple, so easy. You can give much more. What you give returns to you. You can always give love, and can always, always, always give lifting. You need not say a word and your rewards are unspeakably glorious. The sense of soul satisfaction that you know once you’ve given is indescribable.

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New Testament on Gratitude

Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice. – Philippians 4:4.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. – Philippians 4:8.

Rejoice evermore. – 1 Thessalonians 5:16.

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. – 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. – Colossians 3:12-14.

Whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him. – Colossians 3:17.

Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. – 1 Peter 2:9.

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Old Testament on Gratitude

Lord my God, I will give thanks unto Thee forever. – Psalm 30:12.

It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord. – Psalm 92:1.

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Etymology of gratitude: Latin gratitudo, "thankfulness," from Latin gratus, "thankful, pleasing."

Gratitude or being grateful is a law of being.

Expressing gratitude is a law of doing.

Gratitude is a soul virtue.

Gratitude is a Via Christa Degree.


The Compact Edition of The Oxford English Dictionary: 2 volumes. E.S.C. Weiner, editor. Oxford University Press, 1971.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

Related Topics

See Appreciation

See Honor

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