BELIEF AND SUFFERING




HERE ARE THE WORDS

This contemplation is on belief.

What is belief?

Do we ever really think about it?

Could it be that belief is at the root of all suffering?

Let's have a look what belief really is.

A belief is something we consider to be true...

even in the absence of knowing it to be so.

That is the definition of belief.

And yet we base so much of our lives around our beliefs.

If you think about it, it's a bit crazy.

Belief comes about once our own internal standard of evidence has been met.

In other words, belief just happens when we're convinced of something.

But the human mind and senses are highly fallible and easily tricked.

We can observe this in others - we are often

amazed at the strange beliefs some people can hold.

But can we look at something we believe in...

and explore whether we really know that its true?

It takes a lot of courage to do this.

Looking with real honesty,

we all find that very little of what we believe in, is actually truly known.

So would it not be more realistic to say...

I think this seems true?

But we tend not to do this.

We just say I believe.

The difference between simply saying, I think this is true,

and I believe it's true,

is that when we say we believe - we've decided we know.

Our minds continually do this, we're not aware of it.

It just happens.

We create beliefs without even realising it.

Those beliefs become our reality.

They are what we build our sense of who we are upon.

And then of course we become very unlikely to even consider other opinions and perspectives.

And we start to defend those beliefs sometimes even to the point of our very life.

We could take almost any example of a belief,

that actually on close analysis, can't really be said to be known to be true.

And then of course, when we do discover that a belief was not true,

our world can come tumbling down,

or at least there's a degree of suffering in that realisation.

Once we can see this, our attitude to anything that we

believe in changes, we begin to loosen our

grip on beliefs and we become

more careful in deciding about new ones

- and the freedom this gives us is immense.

We find that we become less reactive, less tied to any idea.

As a result, suffering begins to fall away...

and we just leave things that we don't know to be true as simply a 'maybe'.

We don't get pulled into this closed trapped state of belief.

The next realisation is that an expansion in

our thinking has taken place,

and we're no longer as judgmental.

Acceptance becomes easier.

From living in a contracted and limited state,

we open up to a new freedom of experience and expression and

ultimately, we find looking back, that we were actually living in a mental prison...

and the bars were our beliefs.


If you found this interesting, you might like to ask some questions...

I'll answer anything you'd like to put to me.

And if you enjoyed this, of course, feel free to share it.

John