A Grateful Atheist

I learned about a study through Scientific American yesterday. Psychologists, writing in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, found that people keeping a weekly gratitude journal exercised an hour and a half longer per week than those who kept a complaining journal.

Basically, once a week for 10 weeks, people in the study would write down up to 5 things they were grateful for. It could be as simple as "waking up this morning". By the end of the study, they were working out an hour and a half more per week than a group that wrote about life's hassles, like "stupid people driving".

Ironically, I've had trouble being motivated to exercise and keep a food journal since Thanksgiving, so I thought I'd give this a shot. Last night I wrote down 5 things I'm grateful for. It was pretty easy.

But that got me thinking. It smacks of "counting your blessings", doesn't it? I just wondered, if I'm not grateful to someone, how does that work?

Gratitude: noun - the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful.
Origin: 1400–50; late ME < ML grātitūdin- (s. of grātitūdō) thankfulness, equiv. to grāt(us) pleasing + -i- -i- + -tūdin- -tude

Ok, so I guess I can be grateful, and it doesn't have to be to anyone in particular. I guess I was thinking it was more like the christian idea of counting your blessings and thanking god. Blech!

Being free of god, I wasn't sure about how gratitude worked. I guess it's just an acknowledgment of what is good in your life.

Anyway, I thought I'd share the study with you. Aren't you lucky, you get my thoughts that go with it as an added bonus. :P

Have a great day! I'm grateful for you! :)


  1. damnit neece. my popcorns cold.... maybe I should read one of your articles. nightmare messaged me saying he saw some of my posts but hasnt rebuffed one of my theories. He seems very inteligent so Im sure he just hasnt had the time.... maybe you can answer one of my questions, how can an animate object be made from an inanimate source. Answer me that and you become god. Make.... Life... Ok. go

  2. I have answered you now, here, I'll sum it up for you:


  3. Ding Ding Ding! We have a winner! Nature and Science win again! :D

    Awesome work, GMN. :)