What You Believe

According to the dictionary, the definition for belief is the psychological state in which an individual holds a proposition or premise to be true. Belief doesn’t have to be true, and it doesn’t have to be false. An individual who believes in a certain way should be able to do so without being criticized about their held belief. Too many times has a conversation about religion lead into a serious debate on whose beliefs are right, and whose aren’t. I think that the purpose of a belief is to uphold some type of security or peace of mind.

I consider anyone who says things like “You’re imperfect because your beliefs are different than mine, and therefore you’re going to hell,” to be very ignorant. Those who are forcing their beliefs onto others, who are not accepting others’ beliefs, or who are narrow-minded, are not open-minded enough to tell anyone their belief is wrong.

All too often I find myself battling with someone who believes my religion is false and that I am a sinner. They constantly remind me about this over and over again. I do not accept, nor do I appreciate the hurtful judgment that I am a somewhat lesser individual because I believe a certain way. I feel that as long as an individual’s belief isn’t hurting another living thing, it is an acceptable belief.

My beliefs may be very different from a large portion of individuals in a lot of aspects, and they may be very similar, but even though there are certain aspects of beliefs that I wouldn’t personally believe in, I don’t ask anyone to change their beliefs. I accept the fact that other people believe the way they do. Unfortunately, people who have this mindset rarely get the same acceptance in return. .

Religions can range from a huge spectrum of beliefs, but who are we to say that one is better than another? Beliefs should not be argued about. However, being able to share different beliefs and compare them is very healthy.

Personally, I believe in god and heaven. Additionally, I accept the fact that not everyone is going to agree with my belief, but I don’t chastise anyone because their beliefs differ from mine. In fact, I rather encourage others to share their beliefs with me. By doing so, I can evolve my beliefs to what I feel are right. It doesn’t matter that my belief in god or heaven is true or false. I believe it’s true, and by doing so I am given a feeling of hope.

It’s sad that sometimes the members of certain religions are looked upon as “perfect beings.”  However, I believe that this stereotype is the result of people who are forcing their religious beliefs on others. By constantly being criticized mercilessly by these judgmental people, the unfortunate result is that the people being criticized label the religion as a whole, as being judgmental. Really, we should try to make an effort to withdraw from this type of behavior because labeling can most often lead to negativity.

People in certain groups, whether they’re in religion or not, do not necessarily all believe exactly the same way. There are many degrees of beliefs just like there are many degrees of personalities. There are outgoing personalities, quiet personalities, and even confident personalities, and a person normally doesn’t have just one dominant personality, but a combination of a few. Some personalities may be easier than others to deal with, but they are all still very much the factors that make the individual original. In the end, our beliefs are very personal, and can really define who we are as individuals, but is it right to ask someone to change their personality because it’s different by comparison?

In my opinion, a belief is something that gives us all a feeling of peace or solitude. Whether you’re an Atheist who believes there is no god, or whether you’re a Christian who believes there is, there is still a connection to the concept of belief. Our beliefs make us feel guided in a certain way, and even though our beliefs may differ, we should still be able discuss our beliefs freely without criticizing each other.

I honestly hope I was able to convey my message accurately. Religion can be a very big topic, and although this may get interpreted many different ways, as things usually do, remember that this is solely my personal opinion.

Trevor Smith

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