Myrtle Fillmore and Gratitude

Unity cofounder Myrtle Fillmore called gratitude and thanksgiving “qualities of the soul.” The practice of thanksgiving, she said, should be observed in the home every day of the year, not just on the national holiday.

“Heaven and earth listen and respond to the soul that is quickened into praise and thanksgiving,” she said. “Praise is gratitude in action.”

The quote comes from How to Let God Help You, a book by Myrtle Fillmore published posthumously in 1956. (She transitioned 25 years earlier.) In the preface, Warren Meyer said he pulled from Myrtle’s letters, Unity columns, and her lectures to create the collection of Myrtle’s teachings. One chapter is titled “Thanksgiving.”

“The day of national thanksgiving is a day originally instituted in recognition of God as the Source of the nation’s supply and prosperity, a day set apart as a special tribute of praise and gratitude to the great Giver of all good,” Myrtle said.

Giving thanks, she said, has increased meager supply into superabundance before, and thus it can again.

“Elisha did it, Jesus did it, and the same power is latent in you. Why not bring it forth?”

Get in the habit of “truly thinking” about where the food came from every time you sit down to eat, she wrote.

“…and then thinking back of that to Spirit, the great life that makes our vegetables and our fruits grow, there would come into our minds great praise when we ate.”

Myrtle cautioned against the “intemperate custom” at Thanksgiving to overeat, and instead recommended following a “proper diet” for the holiday meal. As vegetarians, Myrtle and her husband Charles did not include turkey on their Thanksgiving table.

“The table should be set with plain and wholesome food for the children who are just forming habits of appetites that shall become permanent factors in health and soul development.

Myrtle also spoke about the importance of being grateful in a chapter titled “Prosperity in the Home.” Give thanks, she said, for every blessing that you gain.

“Thanksgiving for good may be likened to the rain that falls upon the ready soil, refreshing vegetation and increasing the productiveness of the soil.”

She asked all to make “every Thanksgiving paean of praise and a song of joy to the great Giver of our good.”

The Treasures of the Archives series is a regular feature highlighting the extensive digital records, data, and artifacts collection held at Unity Archives, located at Unity World Headquarters.