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Thanksgiving Day is set aside for the nation to express both its collective and individual gratitude for the good things we enjoy.

Thankfulness is a virtue much explored by wise men and women throughout history.

To help inspire your own expressions of gratitude, we offer these pearls that we found particularly meaningful:

"As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." -- John F. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States, who was assassinated 55 years ago today.

"Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others." -- Cicero, Roman philosopher

"At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us." -- Albert Schweitzer, Prussian humanitarian

"'Thank you' is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding." -- Alice Walker, American novelist

"Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn't die; so, let us all be thankful." -- Buddha

"The enlightened give thanks for what most people take for granted…. As you begin to be grateful for what most people take for granted, the vibration of gratitude makes you more receptive to good in your life.” – Michael Bernard Beckwith, spiritualist.

"Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you recognize and express gratitude for the things you have, the more things you will have to express gratitude for.” -- Zig Ziglar, motivational speaker

"Learn to remember you got great friends, don't forget that and they will always care for you no matter what. Always remember to smile and look up at what you got in life.”
-- Marilyn Monroe, actress

"Appreciation can make a day, even change a life. Your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary." -- Margaret Cousins, Irish suffragist

"Gratitude for the seemingly insignificant—a seed—this plants the giant miracle.” -- Ann Voskamp, author.

"Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world." -- John Milton, 17th Century English poet

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity.... It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow." -- Melodie Beattie, author

"Don't pray when it rains if you don't pray when the sun shines." -- Leroy Satchel Paige, Negro League pitcher

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