ARE YOU A BELIEVER?

We are all believers, but not in a higher power.  I do not beleive a world as wondrous as this one was created from nothing.  So I am s believer in a force beyond what we know and see in this world.  I found this article interesting because it sought to explain the political gaps between believers and non-believers.  The author is an anthropologist and has been studying Evangelical Christians for over ten years.

Do as I Do, Not as I Say – NYTimes.com.

Here’s a quote.“What someone believes is important to these Christians, but what really matters is becoming a better person. As I listened in church and participated in prayer groups, I saw that when people prayed, they imagined themselves in conversation with God. They do not, of course, think that God is imaginary, but they think that humans need to use their imagination to understand a God so much bigger and better than what they know from ordinary life. “

Becoming a better person seemed to fall out of fashion during the 60’s and 70’s.  I have ranted against the parent advisers who have made parents responsible for children’s happiness and happiness a measure of mental health.  An understandable phenomena, but one that got a bit over blown.  Moreover, what got lost in our nation’s pursuit of happiness was the long recognized fact that a great deal of happiness is related to “good behavior.”

As the once popular poet Edgar A Guest said,  “I have to live with myself, and so, I want to be fit for myself to know; I want to be able as days go by, Always to look myself straight in the eye.”

 The literary critics think of this as doggerel, but it holds more than a few grains of truth.  Happiness depends on feeling good about yourself, what the theorists call “positive self-esteem.”  What has been lost for too many years is well-known truth that self-esteem is built on a foundation of right behavior.

I was happy to read this article.  Happy because it was seeking to explore the great divide between political parties.  I have ranted for several years about my upset with the media’s polarization of our nation’s people.  To me the article and the others of a similar nature that I have read recently signal that the media has also become concerned about the divisiveness.

I get particularly upset when others rant about how bad America is.  Not that we are a perfect country.  But in the quest to be “fair” we seem to white wash dictatorships,  countries that limit freedom and foster terrorism.

Anyway, back to my main point. Judge others on what they do, not so much on what they say or believe.  If we all tried to be better people, to live more kindly, to share more of our wealth, to care more about our environment  peace might descend.

Staying Strong Tip  Being kinder is easiest to those most like ourselves. Stretch yourself a bit.  Work as the article did to better understand those who beliefs you  usually criticize.   At the same time, don’t be so kind that you fail to speak against evil.  To be silent in the face of wrong is wrong.

Practice Kindness.  Share this and help me grow my blog.  Kindness always circles back to the giver.

IMAGE BY: DaVinci

 

Agree or disagree, comments are always welcomed.