Rich Diversity and the Defining of Faith

Currently listening to: The Midnight Organ Fight by Frightened Rabbit

To be human is to be a part of a diverse undertaking (and this diversity imbibes all things, including belief).  For example, all who claim Christianity do not understand this to mean precisely the same thing; in their diversity, one believes that Christianity is about believing that Jesus is God’s Son, while another views it as a commitment to living life in alignment with the way that Jesus taught.

Who is to say which is right?  Who gets to decide what “Christian” means?  Even more fundamentally, who gets to define who “God” is?

More often than not, people like to assume that their understanding of terms like “Christian” and “God” are the only valid perspectives.  Thus, we can have two individuals who consider themselves theists, yet criticize each other for not believing correctly (that is, for not believing in precisely the same way as the other).  Individuals will likely always be inclined to believe that their perspective is more right than another.  However, this confidence in one’s own beliefs does not necessitate the condemnation of a divergent ideology.  I can believe in the validity of my approach to life without seeking to force all others to define faith my way.  Faith should be recognized as a personal undertaking that is as richly diverse as the rest of human experience.

“I” do not get to define what faith means for another.  That is not my right, and I should be content to recognize the limitations of myself.  Rather than judge another as bankrupt because of our differences, I should be willing to affirm the good in the other, and to walk with them as my brother or sister on this human journey into Awakening.


~ by eternaldode on 30 August 2009.

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