The Other Faith

What will our definition be?

History tells us that the definitive moments in said history are not always apparent as they happen. Immediate needs and issues prevent an easy focus on the bigger pictures. Those stories tell us of deeds great and small, enlightened thoughts, inspirational ideas, and ideals. As a student of the story that is us, the resounding drumbeat reveals we are within those very bounds. In one crisis we are all now engaged, a collective and definitive piece of time in our lifetimes for the majority of us. Never before in my lifetime has such action occurred on such a global scale. With the country and world well into a long race for survival and solutions, how will our chapter be written? Our nature will allow the worst to appear and the best of it to rise, the generational differences have exploded, the geopolitical rifts have opened once more to our detriment, and our communications have met their Tower of Babel. The questions of who we are will be widely answered during this trying of times… This is our fight song.

Photo by Artem Beliaikin from Pexels

This will damage us, not only in loss of life, but in the impact to lives around the world. The isolation will only add to the morass of helplessness, and frustration that is already knee deep. The social mores that drive some to adhere to the mandated guidance, and the dismissive, driven by a belief in some conspiratorial means. It is difficult to amass unity when the goal is left undefined, when the direction is a mismanaged lump of nonsense. All of the above is known, all of those things described are things that will be shown repeatedly to us, ground into our collective consciousness. But what will define us is something that will not be shown repeatedly on the news, it is not something that is tangible, of substance, or able to be held in a hand. It is not something that some own, and others do not. It is not something that resides in any one belief, or faith, one political ideology or the other.

Beliefs, they are at once everywhere and at the same time missing from our midst. There’s the religious beliefs, the political ones, the optimistic ones, and the ones filled with dread. There is the scientific, and the pragmatic, the populists, and pundits. There is ultimately though a deeper embedded connection, a humanality to impress those other truths, those truths that reverberate within that have not been placated by those other beliefs. Is is another belief system? Is it a belief in some idealism, or idolatry? Or is it a natural law? What resides inside most beliefs is the idea, the concept and feeling, that we are more than a singular iota, we are connected to something that with unity, manifests as something greater than. In times of great strife we have found that connection. It is once again a time of great strife, of great change, and while our species is awash in evolution itself, a new day, a new world will rise with it. Connected once more to people, to our nature, and to our purpose as a species. That purpose? To survive, and to heal.

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The story of us is a long and ever changing menagerie of lives, it contains the same filler, the same texture for much of the pages. It is at times such as these that the plots turn, the story takes on new and unique twist, when the ending is suspended in our expecting imaginations. Society instructs us to be strong, and independent, to not burden others with your troubles, while humanity begs the opposite. The color of skin, the god that is prayed to, the language spoken, is not enough to change the color of our blood, the compassion of our nature, nor the conviction of our beings to humanity… To life… To love. The stories of us resound with dignity, with strength, and with purpose towards those tenets. That other faith belongs to our species, and the collective understanding that each one of us is an integral piece of the collective, no pillars or castes, no judgement beyond that of breath, level is that field we stride upon.

Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels

That other faith is our species itself, the accumulation of our entirety, it contains all of our beliefs, those religious, scientific, and agnostic. Even those that carry no belief in a higher power are conflicted with this other understanding that we are, as one, an entity to itself. To believe or not believe in all that we have become, and created, explored, and overcome, is disingenuous to the simple and inescapable trajectory we hold. When our forefathers wrote those words, We the People, that intrinsic other faith was established. With it comes the burdens, the weight, and the mistakes along the way. It also brings with it the inexplicable joy, the triumph of spirit, and the strength and power that is shared throughout. Those things that cross all other boundaries, bridge all that divides, heals the deepest of wounds. The selflessness of service, the empathy for those in need, the survival of the spirit in the face of death itself. Those are the beliefs that carry no trademarks, or copyrights, that are endowed to us by all that we are by every belief that we follow. We are human, and in that direct connection we do understand our capacity to be more than the sum of our parts, more than the sum of our anguish, and more than those things that oppress us.

That other faith, that humanism that resides in us all, and the belief in its goodness. Through troubled and desperate times these little pieces have sustained us, they have kept our spirits whole, they have helped some see a larger faith, and some appreciate the smaller ones. The condition of our compassion, and empathy are not held in those loftier aspirations as they are held in the most basic, the most primitive synapses. This collective of humans, the entity that we create with every breath, and every idea, with every bit of knowledge, and belief, has brought us this far through our exploration of time. The human experience will change, it will grow, it will thin, it will become, and it will continue beyond these unbalanced means. It will also continue to hold us fast to the unwritten belief, that definition of the connection we all share, a human capacity, the other faith.

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