This I Believe

Kelly - Temperance, Michigan
Entered on April 3, 2007

I have for the past many years been on a journey to redefine what I believe, a step at a time, with some measure of choice and thought instead of reactionary, unconscious beliefs. For some time now my reaction to sorting out my beliefs have been to simply not think about it at all. When questioned about my beliefs, I have mostly said I knew more about what I didn’t believe than what I did. This is, in a sense, a reverse belief–a negative belief, this focusing on what I don’t believe rather on what I do believe so I have started to think about what it is that I do believe in.

My personal quote for some time has been one by Robert Fulghum:

I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge – that myth is more potent than history. I believe that dreams are more powerful than facts – that hope always triumphs over experience – that laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.

• I believe that there is more to life than the physical world, that people are more than simply flesh and blood, but also have spirit. As Joseph Campbell wrote, “The inner world is the world of your requirements and your energies and your structure and your possiblities that meets the outer world. And the outer world is the field of your incarnation. That’s where you are. You’ve got to keep both going. “As Novalis said, ‘The seat of the soul is there where the inner and outer worlds meet.”

• I believe that every living thing comes from and is part of that which is divine.

• I believe that the world is made up of and constantly interacts with energy, and that we attract what we put out–so if we are putting out negative energy, we attract negative energy, conversely, if we are putting out positive energy, we attract positive energy.

• I believe that most religions have cores of truth, that they are all metaphors attempting to explain what is divine and what is unexplainable.

• I believe that because religions are made up of human beings, they are all flawed.

• I believe that spirituality is not synonymous with religious–that one can be spiritual and religious, religious without being spiritual, but can also be spiritual without being religious.

• I believe that compassion is the beginning of, and the best of what is humanity and that compassion in oneself and in others should be nurtured.

• I believe that living only for the end results or “what comes next” is short sighted, and that eternity isn’t only a length of time, but a place of being and that eternity can be found in every moment–and those moments shouldn’t be wasted.

• I believe that we are not responsible for or defined by what other people say or do (even if it is about or to us), but that we are only responsible with what we say, or how we act and/or react.

• I believe that life is in the journey, that life is a continual process of growth, that if you aren’t growing and learning–then you aren’t living.