Belief-systems, unawareness, ignorance and (dis-)trust.

Frequently, I ask people during coaching sessions to reflect their selves. A subject that I address is to think about your own belief-systems. In particular, the hidden belief-systems that drive us all.

“Hidden belief systems are what drive our life. Limiting beliefs are hard to see because they are unconscious and influence our behaviors and thought process without us realizing it. We are often unaware of our limiting beliefs, because they were ‘passed down’ to us by the attitudes and beliefs of others. These kinds of beliefs have a powerful impact on the way we see ourselves and the world and can potentially hold us back from achieving our fullest potential and experiencing joy.

The good news is that becoming aware of them, minimizes the power they have to affect your life. In addition, as long as you choose the belief-systems voluntarily, there is nothing wrong with adopting beliefs from others ? “

Belief-systems is a topic I ponder regularly. One of my personal mantras ‘your truth doesn’t have to be mine and vice versa’ I embraced, the moment I realized I no longer wanted to live by some ‘passed down’ belief-systems. At the same time, I also (at the very least try to) stay open to the beliefs and opinions of my neighbors.

I think two of the worst threats to humankind are ignorance and distrust. We all judge, but condemning is something I (again, at least) try not to do. In case I don’t understand why someone does what he/she does, I either ask my neighbor in question directly, or I search for information about the why. Like I write about in my articles ‘Knowledge can increase compassion and kindness”, in which I explore other religions and belief-systems.

One could be unaware of the emotional pain he or she causes by what seems a harmless phrase, word or belief. I believe it is both the messenger as the receiver’s responsibility to think twice about what and how something is said or done. A lot of harm could be prevented by putting oneself in the other persons shoes, stay aware of the fact we are all unique and we are entitled to believe whatever we want to believe.

Ignorance, however, within the time-period we live and thus information accessible everywhere, is no longer a valid excuse to hurt a neighbor.

To me, once a dispute occurs based upon ignorance, it will be very difficult to stay connected in a compassionate kind way. Condemning other persons’ belief-system due to not having educated yourself: it could lead to irreparable distrust.

Once we start to distrust our neighbor(s), I feel it will be the hardest challenge to overcome. As much as one can like or even love a person, the moment the connection is violated based upon ignorance, empathy and kindness will be hard to show because trust is so hard to build up again.

Knowledge is KEY. However, one needs to be aware first of his/her own belief-systems and the impact it could have on our neighbors.

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13 Responses

  1. Another thoughtful piece Patty. I, too, think it’s important to be willing to examine one’s beliefs. And be willing to change them when they no longer “fit.” We are all evolving, and our thoughts, beliefs and behaviors should indicate that. Staying conscious and curious are values I highly regard. While undoubtedly there will always be differences across the spectrum of what we believe and value, we can not only be discerning about what we wish to embrace as our own, but we can offer the openness to others that we wish to experience ourselves.

    1. Thank you dear Deborah. Exactly! In addition, a pleasant bonus of being that open: wonderful connections arise 🙂

  2. I find so many have their own beliefs or preconceived thoughts and are very unwilling to even listen. Sharing ones thoughts/beliefs/ideas are often difficult. I have a couple neighbors that don’t even talk to me because I don’t believe in what they do. I would be friends with them, even neighborly, but it doesn’t go both ways. Though I do find it interesting that they are willing to talk to me when it serves them, i.e. need someone to watch their dog while on vacation, need an egg, cup of sugar, borrow a tool…. This is a great post. I wish others would be willing to take your words to heart. At the very least to have an open mind. 🙂

    1. Koko! Sweet lady, how are you?!?! So happy you visited me here again 😉
      Well, as hard as it might be, if it doesn’t serve you, I think it is OK to stick to a ‘hello-and-bye’-relationship. Because I also believe in balanced relationships.
      Thanks for the compliment about the article.
      Open minded and if a pleasant balance relationship is not possible, at least stay civil.
      Sending you a big hug! XxX

      1. Yes, I still wave. It makes me sad though. I know I am a good person. They will have walking brigades and walk by my house without a care. Before I knew how they felt, I had asked to come along…ten years later, I walk by myself.

  3. For some of us our belief systems are shattered. We cant put the peices back together. It takes a great amount of time to fully grasp. I still am not sturdy on my beliefs and it’s been 4 years since my trauma.

    1. Maybe you will not ever be able to grasp all again, but I think you wrote about it yourself in other words too; step by step and start with one piece. Right?

    1. Indeed, not strange at all 😉
      Thanks dear friend ! I will hop over to your blog later today again. Big hug, XxX

Love to connect with my neighbors on our globe :-)

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