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Yogi Bhajan Lecture: The Art of Appreciation

Excerpts from a lecture by Yogi Bhajan, June 27, 1984

If you appreciate your life, if you appreciate your job, if you appreciate yourself, if you appreciate your surroundings—poor or rich, whatever they are—you are divine. The principle is that you are divine when you appreciate whatever you are. You might be thinking, “When we love God we’ll become rich, and we’ll have the whole world under our feet.” You are totally mistaken. You do not know what God is.

That’s why you all suffer. God is a psyche appreciated round and within us. There’s no loneliness. You must appreciate your job, no matter how dirty it is. You must appreciate your misery, no matter how painful it is. The moment you start appreciating misery it will run away. You don’t have to do anything.

Misery doesn’t need appreciation. Misery needs to give you pain. The purpose of misery is to put you through pain. As soon as you start appreciating misery, its purpose is lost. How is misery going to be there?

A woman cannot live without being appreciated, but a woman need not live without appreciating. Appreciation shall get appreciation; temporary appreciation shall get temporary appreciation. Appreciation cannot come through any other source. Without learning to appreciate, there shall be a gap in life and that gap will mean un-fulfillment, which means anger, frustration, negativity, and neurosis.

That’s why in Thailand every woman is taught, from day one until death, to appreciate. That’s why every Japanese woman is taught, as a life lesson, to appreciate. It is in their culture. Asian people are extremely well-trained to appreciate. It’s not in the culture of the Western people. You don’t appreciate anything…

Appreciation is an art and a lifestyle; a source of happiness and fulfillment. It’s called gratitude, an attitude of gratitude. A person who develops an attitude of gratitude is absolutely divine. You don’t have to sweat. If you have achieved the attitude of gratitude, everything in the world will come to you. If you make it a point to have an attitude of gratitude, it could be the greatest achievement in your life. Gratefulness will make you great. It takes away any discrepancy, any negativity, any bother.  

© 1984 The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan