In America today, so much of our beliefs effect how we all live our lives. An to a degree, how other countries lives, especially if they are allies can have an effect as well. When you believe something to be true, no matter what, people are going to push their will on society. We don’t just do it for religion, we do it for other things as well. If I want to live my life a certain way and others around agree, you are forced to fall in line. And what’s crazy is that living in America you should have the freedom to not be apart of something if you shall choose. But if you don’t align yourself with the status quo, then you will find yourself in a tough jam. The thing is, why do we care so much about each others’ beliefs?
the psychology of man
The reason humans have to enforce will has to do with us as a creature. As a creature we are endowed with the ability to have beliefs and have free-will. And for some reason, we seem to think that since we have these things it is supposed to mean something. When in reality what we believe to be true and what is actually true is different. I would love to believe a lot of things in our world, but the reality is, I have to decipher what is more important. So many people refuse to admit that a lot of what we believe is just not valid. If you have ten beliefs, only three are important. But then you get into this argument of well who gives you the right. Then from there is if it’s not important, why do I feel this way? So you just let them ramble, and as long as they don’t negatively effect society, you leave them be. Because it is only their lives they waste by jamming everything into their lives.
evolution says a lot
Being the carbon based lifeforms that we are, we learn and grow and understand the world around us. So the more we learn about self, the more we realize how complex the mind is, but how mundane we live and behave. So a lot of human beliefs are actually falling apart. Well at least the ones we have come to know over time. Because you cannot expect us to carry the same thoughts forever on Earth. So what happens is new ones replace outdated ones. So who knows in the future what the new-new-new ones will be.
For the past few thousand years man has worshiped a higher power. but what happens the more people become not only aware of self, but are deep into our gadgets. So much so that we begin to follow the practices not in alignment with our cultural backgrounds. We are ritualistic when it comes to our need to always be connected to our digital devices. We carry devices around like it’s our bible, and we can’t help but to look down even if it’s for something very mundane.
belief system in jeopardy
How could ones belief system be in jeopardy because they are into technology. Well, the things that beliefs have challenged for so long are being made possible today. So people are less interested in the intricacy of the idea and more about the burden of proof. And the more technology we have the more information is out here, the more people challenge what is it they believe in.
is it going away
Religion is going away, but is technology really an aspect of the decline? Or, are we just more aware? But that awareness comes as a result of having so much technology readily available.
In the Black community, we have long been so governed under the Christian faith that anything that goes against the grain has been ostracized. And the issue that falls under this topic would have to be gay relationships. It exist in a community, but not widely talked about in a community. You are refrained from really discussing it, but it’s so in your face in today’s society. But how does it feel to be a member of the LGBT community in such a conservative environment? Me being a heterosexual male, I can’t relate to this, but have heard stories told.
The bible has its many uses, but in certain communities the bible was used to do two things. It was used to enslave and it was used to uplift; crazy right. The enslavement of Black people through Christianity in America was a justified, but the religion has also been used to uplift a community. So the the fundamentalist fears that stand keeps a people from delving too deep into LGBT rights. Since the bible states that it is against it, then most likely there will be a push against it. Which means there is a clear separation between how one feels as a person and how one views the relations via the bible.
There is something to be said about the change in times. Because this is more of an issue to an older generation. Because if you are under a certain age, then this conversation is more of a non-discussion. Because to a younger generation you’re used to seeing Gay couples. Rather it be on television, film, or in our daily lives. So to hear our parents, or even grandparents not accepting is a shock to us. We love our grandparents, and pride ourselves on being open. We even push back against those who speak out against the LGBT community, but we are not ready to deal with our elders who fight against the movement.
We as people have beliefs that carry us through life. It is that thing in our lives that makes us thankful for waking up each and every morning. But what happens when that belief starts to cross over into everyone elses’ lives? We love to impose our beliefs onto others. But what happens when what we believe in faith collides with society?
What happens when there is something that takes place in our society that we feel close to us creates a bind with what we believe in religion? You are forced to choose between the faith and the social; but what usually happens is that people try to hold on to both. And what that does is you’re forced down a deeper rabbit hole.
the beliefs that creates binds
Vice President of the United States Mike Pence recently stated that he personally talks to God. And comedian and talk show host Joy Behar commented calling his ability to talk to God, “Mental illness.” It was a statement that got her in trouble with ABC television, for which she was forced to apologize.
But when a man says God spoke to him that would imply that they actually talk. And if they talk, considering what religion is, then how does God feel about guns in our society, or illegal immigration. It’s interesting what God talks to him about and what he omits in conversation. That is the divisiveness of including beliefs in politics. And it’s the duplicitous mentality of some people of faith.
stuck in choices
In our beliefs, we have what we feel and what is real. And what is real tends to be used to combine with the belief. I believe the bible is real, but I really believe in man’s direction. So we try to hold on to society and the teachings of God. But the teachings of God reject so much of how we live. So there lies the bind.
So instead of following the belief we make an excuse, yet people should still follow the belief. And you can’t worship both sides: you can live the way of God, or you can live by man’s ways. But following two powers fully is not possible because one rejects the other.
Throughout history science has changed changed and shaped so much of how we live today. But as the science gets better and better, so does the decline in religious beliefs. And why is that? Why is it that something like religion that has stood the test of time become at risk of failing. We would like to think that it is social issues, but it’s not. The world has always, and will always have social problems. But the strength of science is a threat because science is more than just trying to trace the age of man and our world. It’s our food, our medicine, our relationships, and our mental stability. Man’s curiosity via science has gotten us into trouble and has aided us also in living longer.
There are quite of few things that could change as a result of the science replacing the beliefs in our society.
In a society with limited to no religion we are seeing the effects of relationships today. It was a tradition for a man to approach a woman’s mother and father first before asking her on a date. You waited until you were married to have sex, and fewer children were out of wedlock. Once the beliefs in religion diminish, you start to see no parental intervention in the child’s choice of dating. More sexual relationships that don’t lead to marriage, and single parent households climbing. Like I said, we are seeing this already.
What I find interesting is that the belief is leaving, but the food we eat and how biblical text says man should eat are eerily similar. Now the reasons for them can be slightly different. You have religion that says the body is a temple and nonreligious people say it’s a temple. Only difference is that nonreligious people feel that the body is a temple for longevity and health and belongs to us. While religion feels that the body belongs to God, and you should care for it as he would want you to.
The way we learn in school could change drastically because for the longest we have had freedom of religious beliefs. But the way science interprets the world around us, it becomes harder and harder to focus in institutions. The Big Bang Theory is just that, a theory; and as long as something remains a theory it is up for debate. No matter how strong the argument, but the moment it becomes the Big Bang Theory Truth, that’s when people beliefs are in limbo.
QUALITY OF LIFE
As with all the changes in society, how will ones quality of life be effected. Because for the longest the held belief is there is something awaiting after life. But without the idea of an afterlife, could it bring people down to know this is it? Because there is this motivation to do good since there is to be something after you die. Yet when you only have this and your this, like a lot of people is an awful existence, where are you left. So most don’t want to entertain the idea of a this is it, while so many others love their lives and can accept the end.
What would a life look like with just pure science and other beliefs. This would mean that the average human lives to be 78 years with the notion that this is it. It would mean that a reason to live in the moment becomes a lot more important than to actually build in society. Because why build if there is nothing after this. You should just sit back and enjoy life. Why work, why contribute to society? Sure it helps the next generation, but most people don’t like their jobs and/or lives. So, there is a benefit to maintaining religious beliefs. Because humanity is still as fragile as we were eons ago.
As a young child growing up, I attended church with my mother and two sisters every single Sunday. Since becoming an adult I attend less, not because of religious belief, but because of my job. Working everyday is a must, not just for me, but most Americans. Yet this topic is not about most Americans, but a certain segment of the country that has held on to the Christian faith for a very long time. And that segment of America is the Black community. You see, I went to church every Sunday, but my mother and her sisters went not only every Sunday, but they went to church services during the week. And for my grandparents, they went so much, it could have been easily misleading into thinking they were working in the church as a second job. So why did I choose to talk about the topic of the Black community and the church?
Well, for me, I live in New York City, and recently on the news, I have been hearing how the Black churches across the five boroughs have been closing their doors. One of which, the Cornerstone Baptist Church in Brooklyn just celebrated 100 years of service. But they are concerned that due to high rent because of gentrification and dwindling members attending, they are in fear of closing their doors as well. Their church has gone from 1,300 members down to just 75 people coming to church on Sundays. Now you think to yourself, the Black church was more than just a place of congregated for church. The church for the community was a place which held most of our meetings that were orchestrated by civil rights leaders during the movement. There they discussed agendas for upcoming marches, sit-ins, and any other show of resistance against the oppression we as Black people faced during that time period.
Now, what has been the haven for our social justice and worship is now closing doors. But not just closing their doors citywide, but nationwide. Well, what is happening to the numbers of Black membership? One of the reasons for dwindling numbers is why I don’t attend: employment. Work is so hard to come by in our society today, so every chance you get to work, you do so. Some may take it as you not showing enough time for God, but you are put into a position in which you have to work. Making ends meet is so important, that missing any day is crucial to survival. And with so many of us as Black people still below the poverty level, you can’t expect your parishioners to just take off of work. Yet, is that the only reason, no.
Another reason for the decline in the Black church is due to relationships becoming fragmented in the community. What do I mean by relationships, I mean Black men and women. Going to church in the Black community was a family tradition. But now, with single parent households and mothers trying to carry the load of the family, sometimes she is just too stressed to get her kids ready for Sunday service. Another connection with respect to relationships is the rising interracial marriages. Black people are marrying outside our ethnicity, and those relationships are taking on new beliefs of their spouse or not attending church at all. And still, there more reasons why churches in the Black community are closing.
There is also a rise in the number of Black people leaving the Christian faith and converting to other religious, or not believing at all. That’s right, believe it or not, Atheism is on the rise, even in the Black community. A community that has been deeply rooted in God that even non-believers believe just in case God exist. But why has the belief decline throughout the community. One aspect is in regards to the way church has been centered toward believing that God watches over households where children reside. Yet so many of these households are the main homes that struggle to survive. Another connection to the loss of belief is the same reason for many other groups leaving the church: scientific proofs. The smarter man get the harder man has in believing in divine intervention and the afterlife.
In the end, there are so many reasons why Black churches have diminished, but only a few stick out the most. Scary as it may seem, you might see the nonexistence of the Black church in America. Does that mean Black people are losing faith in life and themselves? No, but as a man who grew up in the Black church, if I live to be my mother’s age, the transformations that our community will take on could be drastic.
The Christian bible has been pondered over for centuries regarding its authenticity in society. The believers say that it is the words of prophets and God; while skeptics say it was merely man. And that man created this as a template in how to live your life on Earth. And that’s what brings me to the topic for today. What if the Christian bible was just that in society? What if it were just a template in how to live your life? That would mean that all the miracles were just more imagery that is supposed to serve as something else in our lives. And what is that something else? Because the bible was written to be unchanged, and is supposed to last for the life of humanity.
But how does a book last for the life of humanity, when humanity in itself is constantly changing. So let’s explore the idea of what life is like for the bible as just a template in how to live your life. That would mean the miracles weren’t true and neither is the notion that we’re created in God’s likeness. Which would further go on to mean that Earth was not created in seven days. Does that devalue the meaning of the bible any less? Could people still believe if that were the case? And does that mean life as we know it for people is over because this is it? And that’s what clouds people’s minds on this topic, is what does life hold for me?
Is that something that people who were the scholars understood about the past? Maybe they knew that man needed something to believe in that was much higher than themselves to define their lives. Because humanity is just as fragile as any other creature. Only problem is that humans are given a conscious. And with that conscious we have the ability to make what we feel are rational decisions. And another aspect of that rational mind is knowing and understanding that we all will die one day; our mortality. Knowing and understanding that this is it for us in life, and nothing else. So here one day and gone the next, not experiencing any real fulfillment out of life. And here is where belief becomes strong in a deity.
Not being able to come to terms with not mainly your ending, but your existing. We hold on to religion because it does in part gives us the reason to exist. We say, “Without God, where would I be.” “Or you’re never alone when God is near.” But how is it that in a world of so many people are we alone and no one to depend on. So the idea of the bible serving as a non-religious text, but more so just a basic moral code, still creates disconnect. Because the moral code is fine and all, but what about the living. We have something in us that goes far back in the DNA chain that makes us who we are, that is the reason we tend to be alone, not like other people, or ignore another person’s existence. And yet we need that friendship and companionship.
See, in the end, I don’t see religion going away. And when I say religion, we think about the major religions. I mean a new religion, or one growing in popularity that is already here, yet small may not go away. People are always searching for something outside of self. It’s something that both believers and non-believers both agree on. Once we feel know we know all there is to know about us as a human species, you’re now interested in something greater. Greater than you, me, this Earth we live on, and beyond.