from Home to Beyond and Back
from Home to Beyond and Back

The Life And Times Of A Traveller

Follow along as I explore culture, life, politics, religion, music, people and places in this world of ours. No sex. Unfortunately.

Home About Old Blog Post Archive fish game My New Blog

Let's Connect:

Facebook Google+ Twitter YouTube LinkedIn

Are you searching for something to do tonight, or this weekend, or this month? Look no further. This is the place to start:
The Fair Trade Ticketing Company
The Fair-Trade
Ticketing Company

BELIEF: A Blessing and a Curse

Published September 12 2013

belief: noun

* something believed; an opinion or conviction: a belief that the earth is flat
* confidence; faith; trust: a child's belief in his parents
* a religious tenet or tenets; religious creed or faith: the Christian belief
* confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof: a statement unworthy of belief

believing belief

Belief is imaginary. Humans are the only species who can imagine what may happen at some point in the future. Well, I believe that is true, without being able to be the brain of a dog or a turtle or an eagle.

However, even though the fact is that belief is imaginary, our brains are wired in such a way that we are convinced, or can be convinced, that our beliefs are true and factual. If you were a European who lived any time prior to the 15th Century, give or take, you would *know* that the earth is flat, and if you sailed out to sea beyond the horizon, you would fall off the edge. They had no proof that the earth was flat, but that is what they had been taught since childhood and they were absolutely convinced that it was truth.

We form most of our beliefs, our "core beliefs", during childhood. We soak in the ideas, ideals and cultural beliefs from our immediate environment and the people around us. A child of redneck white supremacist in Arkansas is going to have the "core beliefs" of a redneck white supremacist. A child of a Hindu Pajari (priest) in central India will hold the "core beliefs" of a Hindu Pajari. And they will be quite different, even though at birth (all things being equal) they have exactly the same biological and chemical makeup. They learn their beliefs.

However, beliefs can be changed. Be they cultural, political, religious or habitual, the repeated use of messaging, or shock, or association (images, sounds, etc.) can alter the beliefs that a person holds. Hence we have American-style political advertisements, just as one example.

There is good belief, such as "I believe I can do it!", which is a very strong and positive affirmation. Let's take, for example, The Canadian Winter Olympic Team of 2010. What was their internal inspiration approaching the Games? "I believe!" And they did. And they succeeded. It can be a very positive thing.

Then there is bad belief. "Kill them in the name of [diety]!" How much death, destruction, dismemberment, distress has been inflicted, and is still inflicted daily, upon mankind because of belief? Immeasurable.

This is a very complex subject, and I don't intend to write a book on it (many have already done so). I only wanted to place a plaintive plea onto the internets:

Please cease and desist forcing your beliefs on others. People do this using very passive methods, and they do it using extremely violent methods. I fully support your right to believe, in private, within yourself, and/or in the company of other people with like beliefs, but I do not support your belief that it is your right to insist that others believe as you do. Because, that belief is not supported in truth or in fact. It is imaginary.

If one was to provide a video on this subject, who else would one turn to except Deepak Chopra. He's hard to listen to, but concentrate on the words. Excellent video.

Randall Hawes