It's Okay To Explore Your Beliefs
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Your Journey With Religion Is Your Own, And It's Okay To Step Back And Explore It

Finding out what you believe is just as valid as believing.

Your Journey With Religion Is Your Own, And It's Okay To Step Back And Explore It

Religion is a heavy word. It means different things to different people. It can be a positive, purpose-giving experience to one person while appearing to another as a negative, self-destructive system of rules. Everyone has their own unique experience with spirituality, and we need to start allowing ourselves more freedom in this experience.

The world we live in is meant to be explored, encountered, and engaged. It is full of billions of people who each hold distinctive beliefs and outlooks on life. Those outlooks are each uniquely developed and equally important. Don't let your beliefs be a regurgitation of the beliefs of those around you. Make them yours, because they are yours.

A personal note to all those who share my grew-up-in-a-Christian-home testimony: it is okay to re-evaluate what your parents told you to believe. The God described in the Bible will not reject you because you wanted to find out whether you truly believe what is said in Scripture. It is okay to have doubts, and those doubts do not make you unloved. They don't make you any less of a Christian than somebody who takes Christianity at face-value. Jesus himself advocates for the validity of faith as small as a seed. Don't let fear of your parents' or church friends' disappointment stop you from taking a second look at your faith. Your religious affiliations, or lack thereof, belong only to you. This is your life, and how you live every aspect of it is up to you. I grapple with this myself every day. I have had to train myself to remember that my faith doesn't have to be blind to be valid, doesn't have to be unwavering to be strong, and doesn't have to be free of doubts to be authentic.

The modern Christian church often scares members away from being knowledgeable about different faiths. It presents considering other worldviews as a sin. But I beg of you: don't let anyone stop you from exploring. Attend a worship service for that religion you've always been curious about; talk to that atheist friend and find out why they really believe what they do; read that book from the author who doesn't share your faith. You will walk away from the experience a more well-rounded and educated person, and it doesn't necessarily mean you're abandoning the faith you have had before.

If you come out of your exploration and decide the truth is what you have already known it to be, this is fine. It doesn't make it any less important or any less reasonable doesn't make you less smart or mature. Developing your own beliefs about faith and spirituality is a lifelong journey you have been given the privilege of going on, and you can change your mind as many times as you want. You are not nailed down to one system of faith. You can pick and choose and reform and investigate beliefs as much as you need to until you find what makes the world make sense.

Your journey is your own, not your friends or your parents or your coworkers. You don't owe it to anyone to believe a certain way. The world is what you make of it, so be free in this fact. Nobody can take away your own personal beliefs, and nobody can take this journey but you.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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