Maybe you think this question is out of date, or sectarian, or irrelevant? Think again. It appears that what we believe affects every decision of our lives, down to which brand of toilet paper we buy, or which light globe.
I came across this oddity, a fairly fundamental oddity perhaps, while I was talking to a patient this week. He believed that he had been most unfortunate, most unlucky, more than anyone else he had ever heard of, because he had a list of ills that had befallen him. He did not believe in life after death, in God or in Nature, the Universe or anything. “When you’re dead, you’re dead, mate!” he said.
The other patient that I saw this week was in fact most unfortunate. She had a list of ills three times the length and seriousness of the first patient. She was less disturbed, more hopeful and more enthusiastic than she might have been, but she believed in Something Out There looking after her. So she lived every day as if she would live forever. She bought good quality fair trade coffee and re-cycled toilet paper. She volunteered at the Op shop 2 hours a week, she managed on a pension that is so small it hardly qualifies for the term. She believed in playing fair with the world around her, blaming no one for her problems but happily meeting each challenge as it arose. Because she believed. I don’t know whether she went to any church and it doesn’t matter.
It is not important what she believed in, but the fact that she had faith in what would be good for her coming around when it was due.
Such belief creates the world we live in. We can muddle along in misery never knowing whether we will live til next Christmas, never hearing anyone say they love us, never having a hand to hold or an ear to tell out troubles to. But if, like the lady I mentioned, we can trust, we can survive.
I too believe in Something Out There. Some days I am mesmerised by Nature in full glory; other days it is the cloud patterns in the sky; sometimes it is the sheer gratitude for the life I have and the friends I love. I too believe that things will work out well. If the doom-sayers want to bring me down, well, I don’t listen.
The more sensible amongst my friends have told me their sage counsel in the past, and even in the present, but although I take care, I don’t fret (well, not too often!) and if God, the Universe and Everything is still there looking after me, then things will be OK, one way or another.
God as an elderly gentleman with a need for praise and buttering-up is for children. Paint him as a happy but stern grandfather and little ones will pay more attention. But adults need to make their own decisions about God. Even if they reject the paternal image and the whole religious performance, they will need at some time or other to decide whether they have something to believe in or not. Sad is the man or woman with nothing and no one to trust to make things right. So often if we just honour the enormity and power of the energy of the universe, we will be standing in awe of the Divine Something. That’s all it takes. Then we can relax, knowing that whatever happens is going to be for the best.
Then we can be like the woman with nothing, who actually has everything.
Some ancients believed in the spirit of each rock and flower. Have you read The Findhorn Garden? It’s a good example of that, and it shows its power.
Some believe in God and St Mary McKillop. Have you read her story? It’s a good example of that.
Some believe in Spiritualism, that the spirits of dead loved ones can help from Heaven. The Spiritualist Churches are good examples of that.
Some believe in Jesus Christ or in Mahommed or Sai Baba or even in themselves as a powerful creator. The secret is……. They are all right!! The power comes from the BELIEF, not from the target of the adoration.
But if you believe in random life and death and random misery or happiness, then that’s what you get, Random Misery or Happiness. How people would join you if you set up a support group or a Church of Random Misery or Happiness? None.
The most important thing in life, more than self-respect, more than wealth, more than friends or love itself, is TRUST that things will turn out well.
What you think you create,
What you feel, you attract,
What you imagine, will be.
We are going to explore some more of these things, as well as naturally effective hormones and the mind-body connection when we meet in May. The ways to find trust, the way to treat yourself and those around you so as to maximise your health and happiness, the way to believe in meeting and knowing the people you need to meet and know, will be explored. Natural remedies are given to us by Nature (God, the Universe, Whatever) and we need to see, admire and use them and be happy and grateful.
Blessings to you all.
PS Be with us on May 26-27 in Mudgeeraba, Queensland. Call Liz on 0431 122 090 if you want to know more. But hurry, my house is not that big, I can only take about 20 and there are 12 booked already!