When you’ve been alive for 56 years, you learn a lot. Mostly from the things that went wrong than from things that went right. I have learned more from my failures than my successes. Don’t get me wrong, there are lessons to be had on both sides of the coin, but it seems like the failure lessons just hit you harder and produce the deepest change. At least that’s been my experience.
From day one of our consciousness, we begin building a life of certainty. A life where we call all the shots, and if we are good and careful and even smart enough, things work out exactly how we plan. And, for the most part, our childish minds can build that sort of life, even if we don’t live that reality. Our imaginations can compensate for a lot at that age, not to mention, the way our psyche is wired by God for survival, most times we get through.
Faith shapes us all. Whether we believe in the existence of God or not, we still have beliefs or personal creeds we live by. And those beliefs shape our lives. They motivate our behavior, the dreams we dream and ultimately the lives we live. Personal beliefs come from our culture, the environments we are raised in and life experiences and when these are our sources, those beliefs can change with each experience or shift in cultural influences.
What we believe and the values we hold is the compass that guides our lives; and when we don’t have an internal compass we look to the culture, our experiences and the opinions of others to become that compass because we don’t possess a “true north” within ourselves.