The True Nature of Thanksgiving
“The Words That Come Before All Else.”
Giving thanks is the foundation of Iroquois spirituality. From Dance for All People - "The Thanksgiving Address (the Ohen:ton Karihwatehkwen) is the central prayer and invocation for the Haudenosaunee (also known as the Iroquois Confederacy or Six Nations — Mohawk, Oneida, Cayuga, Onondaga, Seneca, and Tuscarora). It reflects their relationship of giving thanks for life and the world around them. The Haudenosaunee open and close every social and religious meeting with the Thanksgiving Address."
Here is a selection of videos, showing Iroquois views on the true meaning of thanks-giving and their Thanksgiving Address.
From the video --
“When we wake in the morning we give thanks to the creation;
Tonight before i go to sleep i will give thanks again, and i will give thanks to all the creation;
And tonight i will include the children;
You can’t become an Indian, but you can have the heart of an Indian;
by listening to your heart and listening to what is all around you, you’ll become a better person;
a spirituality — an awareness that you’re a part of everything out here.” (Mike Tarbell)