Rene Descartes said, “I think, therefore I am”
I Say, “My Beliefs Construct My Identity.”
I don’t deny that what I think is speculation–yet some of my speculation has rested on seemingly unchanged conclusions for so long that I find myself believing. I discover myself through believing these things, as I learn that they have become part of my self-concept*. I might even be willing to fight to the death for the right to give voice to what I believe to be “true”, as I’m sure others would (under certain circumstances).
I’ve given up wondering why some of my “conclusions” “feel” unlikely to change, in spite of new information. To me, it doesn’t matter. I do the hard work –with wide-open eyes and ears-to-hear –of reconciling the “facts on the ground” with the unchangeable core of what I can’t (or don’t wish to) stop believing.
The very process of my considerations of potential truths, which to hold dear, is what convinces me that I belong here. It has become my reason for living. I guess I’ve turned out to be a mystic, and I would also say I’m a Christian; however, coming from a Baptist upbringing, I feel uncomfortable saying “Christian mystic”.
Actually, I think religious labels are best shared only with her most intimate confidantes. I think one’s religion is like a personal habit, except that it involves emotional associations which could never be duplicated in another human’s mind. When one refers to her own belief, a plea for the listener’s empathy is understood–even if not vocalized, and not confidently anticipated.
The video below is a humble and happy rehearsal of “Be careful Little Eyes What You Do.” These kids have personality. I hope they grasp that “being careful” means to use care–not to be leery.
My Take on each verse of this song:
1. Eyes: Be careful not to judge. Remember God sees what is in the heart.
2. Ears: Be careful not to take offense. Remember God has your back. You’re free to be compassionate as well as detached, even in emotionally charged situations.
3. Hands: No need to comment. (Although, torture, would certainly be out.)
4. Feet: Don’t set out to do anything believing the ends justify the means. “Life’s a journey, not a destination.”
5. Tongue: For goodness sake, do not defend laws and public policy that break the golden rule.
6. Heart whom you trust: This is too deep. Maybe some other time.
7. Mind what you think: Again, maybe some other time.
Without further adieu, please enjoy children of the Bethany Children’s Home, an orphanage in Tanzania:
*Below, please find a link to the simplypsychology.org page on self-concept:
If it doesn’t work, I’m sorry. It works if you cut and paste the url.