In the past few years, I have collected a great number of new beliefs. Reincarnation, for instance. God’s spirit in us all. More important than the ideas I’ve come to accept, though, is the way I’ve let them change my life.
Now, I don’t just have beliefs; I act on them as well.
I pray. I meditate. I read spiritual books. I discuss these things with friends.
I have more purpose. I have more perspective. I am more comforted in my pain. I have more peace.
I am happier.
Whether you call it religion, or spirituality, or whatever, I am living for something that is higher than myself, and it feels good.
Of course, not everyone has faith in a realm that’s higher than ours. David doesn’t, for example, and he probably never will.
And that is okay.
He still has faith.
He has faith that if he works hard and raises good children—or at least does his best to raise good children—and has relationships that matter, it will go well for him in the end, and that even if he dies and there is nothing else past this earthly life, he is glad to have lived.
That is what he believes, and that is enough for him. It isn’t enough for me—not anymore. But for him, it is enough; these beliefs give him purpose.
And here’s the funny thing: Yours do, too. Your beliefs give you purpose, even if you’re not religious at all. You believe in something already, something that makes life worth living, even if it has nothing to do with God, or a spiritual realm, or an afterlife.
Even if you just believe in being nice.
Otherwise, you wouldn’t still be here right now.
And that’s fine, I think. Because even if your belief isn’t a theology, it’s still a religion.
It is still a purpose.
You don’t have to be sure of anything, of course. Who ever said that you did?
I’m not sure. And I probably never will be again. In fact, I even like changing my mind sometimes.
It makes me more human.
You don’t need to be sure about your purpose to have one. You just have to figure out what you already believe, then go from there.
But don’t just figure it out and then do nothing about it.
Figure it out, then let it change your life. Do the things that it tells you to do, things like prayer or meditation or becoming a better person. Getting rid of an addiction or a bad temper.
Live for a reason. Make your beliefs important. Because, really, they are important.
They are the meaning of your life.
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Get What I Learned from Jane on Amazon.
More Stuff to Read:
Some Spiritual Practices Actually Work. It’s Amazing.
There are hundreds of spiritual techniques for overcoming depression and increasing inner peace. Only one blog talks about whether or not they work. With ratings. (Take that, God.)
- My Favorite Spiritual Practices for Overcoming Depression
- Depression Success Stories and Spiritual Practice Success Stories
I Suspect Inner Peace Is Just a Myth. Here Are Interviews With People Who Disagree.
Some people are such show-offs. But that doesn’t mean they’re not worth listening to.
There’s a Book for That, Too
It’s a great time to get suddenly awesome. So many teachers. So many books.
- Best Spiritual-But-Not-Religious Books for Overcoming Depression
- Books I Want My Kids to Read Someday