This I Believe

Kit - Bel Air, Maryland
Entered on October 9, 2006
Age Group: 65+
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This is my Credo. “Credo” means “I believe.” I believe that I am what I believe.”

I believe that the purpose of life is to learn, to grow, to change, and develop in the process of finding out who we are. I believe in the existence of a higher self, the goal of the process of discovery, also called the spirit or the soul. I believe that our earthly existence is a transitory phase the soul is passing through, and that death is a doorway,not an end. I believe in something I call “God”, but which I have a hard time describing. I believe that God is something like the combination of all being, all love, all beauty, all truth and all souls. That is to say, I believe that we are ourselves a part of God, and that each, individual soul is uniquely intrinsic to God’s very existence. I believe therefore, that each person is as valuable and worthy and important as any other given person. I believe that people are inherently good and wish to be good, though there be unquestionably, a darker side to human nature. I believe that the spirit is formed and shaped, enlarged or diminished, by the choices that we make. I believe that we are free at every moment to choose, however restricted our choices may seem to be at any given time. I believe that our choices shape not only our spirits, but also our lives, their patterns and events. I believe that in making choices, we must be willing to accept the terror of risk, and the pain of suffering, for without these hurtful twins in our lives, no learning, no growth can take place. I believe that evil arises from unwillingness to risk the pain of suffering, that evil arises from making moral choices that seek to avoid the hard demands of truth.

I believe that the fuel for the process of learning and growth is love–love for self and love for others. Love makes the risk of pain, that necessary preamble to growth, an acceptable risk. I believe that as our self-knowledge grows, so, by cyclical feedback, does our capacity for love of self and others grow. I believe that it is a necessity to actively take that love out into the world, giving away our strength and our knowledge, and gaining new strength and new knowledge from others. I believe that each person’s path towards growth, knowledge and truth is individual and unique and worthy of respect; and that while we can use, indeed we must have, the help of others, each person alone is ultimately responsible for forging her or his own way. I believe that we are all interconnected. I believe that life is profoundly mysterious.