Your Beliefs and Choices

12 Sivan 5781 23 May 2021

The events nowadays are really disturbing, gruesome and even chaotic. From pandemic, calamities, cold war of China and the West,  and to the recent war in the Middle East are tumultuous onslaught to our mental and emotional wellbeing. But, come to think of it, everything boils down to the basic element of our beliefs.

Every day and even every moment, we can get to examine and choose what we listen to, what we want to do and what we want to aim for. But, we are bombarded with myriad of choices from media, entertainment and our work. In all of these millions of choices, nobody seems to care to help us examine on how we make our choices. All the advertisements, voices from our families, significant others and social media do not help us examine how we choose. Most of the time, this opportunity to know about ourselves, examine and correct how we choose are taken from us. We are constantly moved to be convinced by the information before us or bombarded to be inclined to take a certain stance. It is subtle but it is there.

So, we think that we seem to have chosen for ourselves but we did not. Think again. We chose at the spur of the moment. We are also made to believe that we are to choose instinctively or impulsively. But, then again, with a slight queue we are manipulated to be triggered by our emotions, but not made to reexamine the primary reasons for making a selection and whether these are comprehensive and sufficient to merit our support or not.

Worse of all, we are made to be aware of these primary reasons but only to be confused by attaching these to the promoted information which when scrutinized is lacking credibility or balance. So, the choice has been made for us.

These choices that have been made for us by the media, our religion and significant others constitute their beliefs but not our very own. If we are constantly aware, then most certainly, we can own up to them that these choices make our own beliefs. On the other hand, if we choose to ignore, lazily live and let live, of course, we are responsible to our ignorant choices so to our own ignorant beliefs.

In short, nobody will do it for us to have a balanced, well-informed perspective and have a balanced well-sounded belief. We are already in our 21st century and in the well recorded and documented human history, we are in the 5781st   year already. Are we still solely to rely on the incomplete and already made-up beliefs of the information and news before us?

We are to do our main part. We need to know our biases and tendencies. We need to know our weaknesses and strengths. We need to know what entices us easily and disgusts us instinctively. We need to know whether our beliefs are well-founded or built on shaky information of another.

Knowing these triggers will help us be on guard in making our selections right away and be aware when we would be influenced easily. When we set some guidelines on how to examine, we will avoid millions of instances of being swayed easily and have us fooled.

If you are not convinced, try to answer these questions:

  1. When you hear the news, what is your instant reaction?
  2. What are your reasons for reacting or responding in such manner?
  3. Have you checked the opposite side of the news? Try to listen, watch and read, and tell in your own words, what are their reasons? What are the reasons that, surprisingly, your feelings can identify with so easily? What are those reasons that your feelings could not take and disgust you?
  4. What positive or negative reasons agitate you? Would you be willing to know more and the complete deep root causes of them all?

If certain strong feelings have been ignited instantly, then most probably, you get influenced easily unknowingly by already programmed history and passed on beliefs without you checking, verifying, researching and validating. Try these 4 simple steps of questions that will help you learn more about others and, most importantly, yourself.

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