How is losing your faith the best thing that could happen? To find out the answer, we must understand the difference between confidence and faith by delving into the cultural folklore behind the concept of faith. Are you ready for this adventure?
We can infuse words with almost any meaning. Semantics is the study of how languages attach meaning to terms. When someone says it’s just semantics, they argue that the words mean relatively the same thing. But the difference between the concept of religious faith and confidence is not close.
What Is The Difference Between Faith and Confidence?
Confidence is the “high degree of certainty” that something will occur. It is something that we can test. For instance, there is a high probability that the sun will rise and set. We build this degree of confidence in the evidence of sunrises and sunsets.
Faith is the belief in things that have no proof. Faith is a term that the cultural narrative assigns to those who hold religion above reason. The belief in religion is a slippery slope. It often includes imaginary friends and enemies or Gods and Devils. So, why is losing my faith in these fictional entities so important?
So, belief is the tool religions use to confuse the difference between faith and confidence.
“You believe in a book that has talking animals, wizards, witches, demons, sticks turning into snakes, burning bushes, food falling from the sky, people walking on water, and all sorts of magical, absurd and primitive stories, and you say that we are the ones that need help?” ― Mark Twain
The Best Thing That Could Happen
Being freed from the delusion of religious “magical thinking” will put your life on solid ground. Losing that which confines and binds the mind is a good thing. It all starts with understanding how culture twists our confidence into something it can control.
Scientifically verifiable processes are the basis for a healthy spiritual practice. It is the difference between faith in fairy tales and confidence in facts.
The Slippery Slope of Faith
Faith begins with the acceptance of the existence of imaginary friends and enemies. It seems innocent enough on the surface. But, this is also the door that makes the mind susceptible to other baseless ideas. If you can accept that the imaginary friend exists, it becomes easy to believe in an imaginary enemy’s existence. It’s the basic concept of the black and white fallacy underlying dualism.
Dualism is an oversimplified way to categorize perception. It acts like blinders. It makes it possible to ignore or reject any information that doesn’t fit within the worldview. It also supports the idea that religious prejudice is not only acceptable; it is preferable.
Mitigated dualism is the basis of the Abrahamic or Semitic religions of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. It’s where one imaginary entity is superior to a second imaginary friend or enemy. They didn’t create this contradictory doctrine; they adopted it along with the superstition and mythology of those who made these systems. The Semitic religions are the rebranding of the Assyrian, Persian, and Babylonian mystery religions.
This flawed philosophy contains many contradictions and illogical premises. And, it’s why these religions need interpreters, priests, and teachers. They need to explain away the problems inherent in the system. They use groupthink manipulation tactics to present mythology as fact.
So, if someone doesn’t believe in the same imaginary friend, they are not acceptable. And the slippery slope continues downward. Once they are accepted, then it justifies discrimination, prejudice, and bias of all kinds. It justifies harmful actions like genocide, racial, ethnic, and gender discrimination. But these negative beliefs are okay because their belief system says it is acceptable to their imaginary friend.
The Benefits of Losing Your Faith
Sometimes a picture can instantly convey the idea. What is the difference between faith and confidence? When I get this question, I think of the image above. It contrasts mythology and science. Of course, the top portion is the famous picture by Leonardo Da Vinci of “The Last Supper.” The bottom part is the same scene, but with prominent scientists who have positively impacted the world.
The bottom portion of the image includes, from left to right, Galileo Galilei, Marie Curie, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Isaac Newton, Louis Pasteur, Stephen Hawking, Albert Einstein, Carl Sagan, Thomas Edison, Aristotle, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins, and Charles Darwin.
The benefits of living your life free of mythology and superstition are far-reaching. It starts with you. Without the artificial boundaries imposed by religion, you will see the world much differently. It will make you a freethinker who can see things with a universal instead of tribal perspective.
When you have a universal perspective, you can make better decisions that will be good for you and everyone in your circle of influence. Your circle of influence is far greater than you realize. Everything we do has a ripple effect in the lives of those we touch.
And, this is why losing your faith is the best thing that could happen. It is healthy for you and the world. If you want to positively impact your life and those in your circle of influence, you will lose your imaginary friends and enemies.
Faith and belief are boundaries. The fewer limitations you have, the more clearly you can think. When you see the bias and prejudice that underlies your thinking, then you can change it. Clarifying your thinking is beneficial to you and everyone in your circle of influence.
1) Become a Freethinker
You can become a freethinker. Leo Tolstoy is the first to use the term and define it.
“Freethinkers are those who are willing to use their minds without prejudice and without fearing to understand things that clash with their own customs, privileges, or beliefs. This state of mind is not common, but it is essential for right thinking..”. ― Leo Tolstoy
A freethinker is someone who sees through the programming of the cultural narrative. More importantly, they can remove this negative programming from their minds. They cultivate the use of logical reasoning and common sense. They develop keen observational skills and learn how to harness the power of their intuitions. It’s a combination of right and left brain skills that result in a greater level of intuitive and analytical reasoning.
The dominant cultural narrative skews the definition of reason and common sense. When we are under the influence of cultural folklore, we reflect its bias and prejudice. It makes us more susceptible to accept other things that are not factual. They produce value judgments on a sliding scale that overrides our common sense.
For instance, ask a group of people if they are law-abiding citizens. 100% will answer yes. But then ask them if they went over the speed limit in the last week? Most people break some human-made law at least once a day.
2) Return to our Original State of Innocence
We are born without beliefs, without the belief in gods. It makes us all natural-born atheists. In this original state, we live in happiness and joy. When we lose our faith in mythology, we can return to our original state of innocence. To do this, we must overcome the fears that maintain our beliefs.
The best thing that could happen for your psyche is to regain your innocence. If you are curious, there are three ways to approach the subject of God; faith, experience, and reason. Some people choose one, and many use all three.
“Newborn children represent perfection and the state of being to which each of us is duty-bound to return. In the instant after you were born, you were fearless, pure love, innocent, infinitely wise, of boundless potential and beautifully connected with the unseen hand that created the universe. Most of us on the planet today have lost this connection to our authentic selves, this original state of being in which we were unafraid to walk toward possibility and reach for the stars. We have forgotten who we are.” ― Robin S. Sharma
3) Become a Kind Person
Once you return to your natural state of being, several doors open. The virtues of the spirit lead us on the path of kindness. You can go almost everywhere when you are on this path. Most people will accept those who are kind and considerate.
Yes, some will reject and scorn you for developing a conscience. Sadly, some greedy, prejudiced, and biased people find their way into positions of power. Don’t let this deter you from making the world a better place. Become a kind person. It is a legacy that touches the lives of many people. It will result in a more humanist-centered mindset. Cultivating a humanist mindset is the best thing you can do for the world.
Losing Your Faith ― Overcoming Fear
Our beliefs about reality come from the programming that we receive. Most of this programming takes place in our youth when we are most susceptible to programming. It usually comes from people we trust, our parents, and spiritual leaders.
God is a powerful metaphor, and organized religions use this metaphor as a tool for recruitment and retention. It links your faith to your relationships and even your livelihood. It’s another tactic to keep you a customer. They use these social systems to cement you into their belief system and keep you from asking questions. Heaven forbid, pun intended, that you become a freethinker.
You can skip this section if you don’t believe in an imaginary friend or enemy. If you believe in religion, then losing your faith is probably very scary. Your faith is likely a large part of your identity, and this is their goal. It keeps you a customer. And it makes you an advocate for whatever agenda they want you to follow.
You can overcome these fears. You can take some practical steps to reduce anxiety and increase the joy in your life. Negative cultural programming comes from organized religion. They target two groups in the population, children and those in crisis.
The young are easy to brainwash. Unfortunately, this is a common practice. Immature minds are easy to program, especially those they trust. Children trust their parents and adults who appear to have their best interests in mind. These people teach them not to touch fire and be careful near places where they could fall. The adults they trust also immerse themselves in religion’s doctrine and dogma.
Children born into families with “deeply held” religious beliefs nearly always become converts. They receive instruction from an early age. There is no freedom of choice; it is a forced indoctrination. No other alternatives are available. Children do not have other options.
Children are less likely to distinguish fact from fantasy. So, it is easy for them to mistake mythology for reality. The people they trust would certainly only tell them the. Right? The need to believe becomes ingrained as part of individual identity, and it becomes a necessity, not a choice.
Some people believe that subjecting children to religious programming is child abuse. Richard Dawkins noted scientist is of this opinion. Others believe that as long as there is no apparent harm to the child, it is not child abuse. It is simply the structured indoctrination of established tradition.
People in Crisis
The other sizeable population susceptible to religious programming is those in crisis. People find religion when vulnerable because vulnerable are easier to brainwash. It doesn’t matter what the problem is; it could be financial, emotional, or health. It doesn’t matter. Religion uses a crisis to make converts, and converts turn into paying customers. You pay with money and with conformity to the religious stereotypes they provide. Once they get a critical mass of the population, they can program any agenda.
Consequently, we see that the need to believe ― overcomes reason. Many people live in cultures dominated by these paradigms. So, appearing like you are a part of the crowd is not just a way of life. It’s a necessity.
How to Lose Your Religion
1) Test Your Path
The first thing we recommend you do is to prove your path. I test my path regularly. See if your spiritual direction will make you the person who leaves a positive mark on this world. Testing is how to find a just and verdant belief system. It is the only way to get where you want to go in your spiritual work.
We also recommend you use the practical strategy of using emotional checks. It’s a proven strategy to help you stay on track and keep you clear-headed. It is essential when you walk on the sacred ground of your worldview.
2) Question the Cultural Narrative
Next, become like a child. Learn to ask questions again. If you ask any pastor, preacher, or priest, they will tell you that young children ask the most challenging questions. Many a Sunday school teacher learns to lose their faith because of children’s insightful questions. If God is all-powerful, why doesn’t he kill Satan? Why are there so many versions of our perfect religion? If God is love and forgives everyone, why did he create Hell?
So, learn to question the cultural narrative. If you are a victim of systematic indoctrination as a child, it is not your fault. However, as an adult, it is your responsibility to correct this negative programming. Otherwise, you will perpetuate negative prejudice and bias.
“Religious people claim that it’s just the fundamentalists of each religion that cause problems. But, there’s got to be something wrong with the religion itself if those who strictly adhere to its most fundamental principles are violent bigots and sexists.” — David G. Mcafee
3) Focus On Consciousness Development
The best thing that you can do is become a better person. The world needs people able to think and solve problems. It’s good for you and the world. So, focus on developing and developing your awareness. Find tools to enhance your ability to learn and to think critically. Find teachers that show ways to expand your awareness and investigate higher states. Don’t fall into the trap of becoming a follower.
Spiritual technologies are what we call the ancient methods for exploring consciousness. These tools expand awareness and unlock the gifts to reach higher states of consciousness. We divide these tools into four major categories:
Anyone can use these techniques. All you need to do is follow the process. It’s like following the recipe for baking a cake. If you combine the right ingredients in the right way and you get something delicious.
The best thing you can do for yourself and the world is to lose your prejudice and bias. Remember the difference between confidence and faith. Faith and belief are slippery slopes that lead to the source of damaging bigotry and bias. Organized religion is the machine pushing this negative programming. So, please make losing your faith a goal. You can do it. Help make the world a better place to live.
Thanks for reading this article. We welcome your opinion, so don’t hesitate to comment or email us. We hope it provides some food for thought. You can find more mind-opening topics on our blog.
You will get special offers, online training discounts, and free unadvertised downloads if you register on our site. We comply with all GDPR guidelines and never share or sell your contact data.
Please donate to support our mission of providing these ancient spiritual development tools.
(1) Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia