Belief has the potential to lift us up, but it can also hold us back. Beliefs, particularly those placed upon us by others or society as a whole, can be limiting. We mustn’t let the faulty beliefs of others and even ourselves at times hold us back from reaching our full potential. This is true even in the case of faith.
On the topic of belief, Anne Wilson Schaef writes:
“Faith is a personal process. One of the problems that we as women face in accessing our spiritual self is all the things we have been told that we should believe. We have tried to swallow beliefs from outside. Rarely have we taken the time and effort to go inside and start with our own awareness and understanding of God or a power greater than ourselves and let ourselves trust our own knowing. In our busy lives, it is easier to reject than ‘wait with’ our knowing. It is easier to move on that it is to ‘be with.’
No one else can give us the answers about our spirituality. Reading and thinking cannot provide the solutions. Our spirituality is experiential, and it is intimately connected with who we are.”
Faith and our belief in a higher power is extremely personal, and it starts within, as Anne notes. It takes a great deal of introspection and reflection to arrive at our own conclusions about spirituality, and through self-awareness, we deepen our connection to a higher power. Many (mostly well-meaning) people attempt to force their beliefs unto us, but this will never work. Belief is something you must know and feel deeply in your heart and soul. It comes from our own understanding. This requires time and effort to develop though, which takes a good deal of patience. It is easy to skip ahead and adopt someone else’s beliefs rather than take the time to cultivate your own. Without the time and space to nurture your beliefs, however, you will never truly achieve the understanding and connection that arises from knowing yourself. Make time for what matters, including yourself. Look within to learn who you really are and what it is you believe in. Take time to know yourself.