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Am I wrong, because you’re right?

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Your world is defined by that which you accept as truth. Whether it is the things you were taught in school, or by your parents; information gleaned through experiences or as is often the case, formed by the religions, belief systems and societies we grow up in.

Do you know your box? Do you know what it is made from? Do you know why you believe what you believe… and who you believe? How do you choose who and what is true?

We all have a box. Even those who claim to live on the fringe and don’t adhere to mainstream scientific theories or who have different opinions about our world, they’re in a box a too, it’s just a slightly different box.

Our boxes are our reality, and no two are the same. What you believe makes your reality concrete, solid and logical. It gives you something to hold on to, something to base future opinions and decisions off of. We tend to cling to these beliefs, to this solidity, because when we are faced with evidence that the rules that our reality is based on might be false, everything else in our reality begins to crumble as a result.

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We humans are stubborn, tenacious, and relentlessly fight to keep hold of what we believe in. Strength in our convictions is important, it gives us confidence and a base from which to live our lives. But clinging to convictions that we have simply accepted from others, rather than discovered for ourselves, can also be a crutch. When they prevent us from being open to new ideas. When they prevent us from being able to see into the boxes, into the realities of others. When they prevent us from connecting. When they keep us separate.

They shouldn’t. If you have enough conviction in your beliefs, there is nothing that should be able to shake them. It is nothing but fear that causes us to look at the viewpoints of others with loathing and the refusal to understand.

It is important, in my opinion, to have your beliefs challenged. It will teach you which your strongest convictions are, and also – help you shed beliefs that you took on without ever realizing why.

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I challenge you, as I am challenging myself, to take the time to look at people and try to understand, not just that they are different, but why they believe what they believe. If you cannot agree, if you cannot accept their belief systems, then maybe at least we can learn to accept that these difference are not something that makes them bad, or makes them wrong; it just shapes their reality differently from ours.

Why? Because it’s fascinating to see what the realities of the other humans in this world are made of. Because for a moment, when you are contemplating possibilities, whether you choose to believe them or not, your reality shimmers, changes, adapts. And with it, whether you realize it or not, so do you. When you are open, you are able to resist the urge to judge, to condemn, to hate without reason. When you are open, and willing to share your convictions, and witness those of others – you are conquering fear.

Maybe then, when you look at me, you won’t just see someone who believes in aliens and government conspiracies. Maybe you won’t judge me as lost or condemned because my religious beliefs don’t conform to yours. Maybe you’ll see another person, born on the same planet as you, with a heart and a soul.

As I hope to see you.

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  • gemac7

    I started writing but it vaporized so here it goes again. There are principles, truths, ideas that are often defined by their opposites. You may not always be able to define love but you know it is not-hate. Peace and war, good and bad, right and wrong. All people are a mix of good and bad. Parenting to a large degree consists of not overstressing the negative, emphasizing the positive, and instead of scolding and lecturing, live a quiet example of what you want others to be. This is what keeps marriages and friendships together … that and on occasion an agreement to disagree. There are moral codes like the ten commandments that are a basic structure for a society. Or you can take a value / ethic / paradigm like Steven Covey,s 7 habits. Look with google into the 8th habit. Or an idea like “Pay it Forward”. Skin color, religion, poverty, language, are barriers that should not limit friendships. Mixed race marriages force people to start looking at all humans as brothers and sisters. Hardened theives, murderers, sexual exploiters, drug addicts, child abusers, wife beaters, bullies and the like should be avoided unless they turn from those paths with true repentance. If you are a communicator or writer or even a social person, you have a responsibility because you will influence others. It is said that in a democracy you get the government you deserve. You will find the friends you deserve. Money seeking to keep and make more money has no conscience, is a three year old with a loaded semi-automatic. Someone gets hurt. Hitler started out with a small following yet those multiplied and the ensuing suffering and depravity on both sides of that terrible conflict came from a dangerous idea.We have been fed sugar coated food (literally|) because we liked it and pursued “sit down” cushy jobs. and the norm is diabetic and obese. We have to find the good things in life and share them so we can lift society up cause they are our neighbors and friends. Nuff Said!