Tuesday, August 19, 2008

What do you believe now?

What is a belief that you hold dear and why? How do you justify this belief?

Feel free to challenge each others' justifications and discuss one another's beliefs.

121 comments:

Fred said...

I believe in serendipity. Right as you give up, something wonderful you never would have dreamed of comes along. I don't know what sort of facts I could have behind this but my own, and that is that right when I thought life and humanity had entirely given up on me and I was ready to give up on them, I found happiness and people who helped pull me out of that hole by the bootstraps (or possibly slippers...I hate shoes). I now depend on serendipity to a certain extent, and I trust it to make my life, if not better, at least a rather more interesting experience.

Fred (Kate, but there are so many of those...)

Selina Lujan said...

A belief that I hold near and dear to me, is Faith. Having some sort of Faith in my life, in Christ, and in others is really important to me. I feel that the faith that I hold will guide me in the correct direction, and it will help me believe and build confidence in myself. It provides hope in all that we have seen gone wrong in our own lives and society. Faith, also provides a positive outlook on life and through positivity I believe that all good will come to you.

Amelia A. said...

First of all, I would have to agree with Katie. This world is full of surprises and complexities that we will probably never understand, luck being one of them.

Anyway, my answer to the question: I believe that homosexuality is not a choice. For me, this belief is backed by scientific evidence and also personal experience. Research has found that the brain of a gay person is different than that of a straight person. However, they are NOT mutated/deformed, they are just different. This is something that they are born with, it doesn't evolve due to environment or their choices, it's just the way it is. I also know many people who are gay that would give anything to be straight, my sister being one of them. I watched her battle for years with her sexuality, hating herself for it and wishing that she could just be "normal." I'm sure that (at that time) if she had a choice she would have "chosen" the more accepted sexuality. For me, this is conclusive; it may not be enough for everyone to agree with me, but it's certainly what I believe and what I feel strongly about.

Andi Hayes said...

I have to say that I completely agree with Amelia and was going to say about the same thing. Although, unlike Amelia, I have not had much personal experience with people of homosexual persuation, I know that it is not a choice. It is just like attraction for straight people. If you could control who you were attracted to, then you would never have your heart broken or be hurt because you could just stop being attacted to the person. You have no control over who you are attracted to, whether you are hetero- or homosexual.

Fred said...

I second that! So discriminate/oppose something no one (absolutely NO ONE) has any control over?

Jake said...
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Jake said...
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Jake said...

I hold the belief that everyone has a right to have their opinions, even if some would seem disturbing to me. But I also believe that if you take your beliefs into a physically active stand point, then i have a right or even a duty to uphold my opposing or similar blief as wel.

Durrie said...

so i guess I grew up Catholic, and I really respect what religion does for so many people. But I've decided that it's not for me. I beleive that even if there IS something up there, who am I to assume that I know anything about it? As a mere human, is it at all possible for us to comprehend the sort of power that could create the universe? And I don't think I should even begin to assume that I know what a higher power would want out of the human race. So as far as deciding what's morally right, I look to myself and what my own morals tell me, instead of a religious doctrine of right and wrong, heaven and hell. I call myself agnostic, and a lot of people have honestly tried to save me from eternal damnation by joining their religion, but I've realized that at least for me, a religion isn't necessary. I don't know what happens after we die, but maybe that isn't really important.

Shiven said...

I believe in the New York Knicks. Somewhere deep in my heart, i know the Knicks want to be better. I believe that they will finally start working hard, and realize that winning is a good feeling. Their work ethic will also finally be up to par with the rest of the NBA teams. I believe in that team.

firefeather said...

I really truly believe that what you are, and where you go in life is completely up to you. People argue the nature vs. nurture dispute, but i think that its your hard work that makes you what you are.
Also, i agree with the homosexuality thing, but i have to say, Andi; i don't think i'd want to be completely in control of who i'm attached to! Life is more fun with a litte unknown destiny.

Sophia said...

I believe almost everything already written on this blog...but a belief I hold very dear to me is that everything happens for a reason. Whether it is good or bad I know that it is vital for us to learn and get to where we need to be. Why else would a wonderful person die in a car crash when they are only 20? I don't know if there is a God, or a Heaven, but I do believe that there is something...there must be

DrewCarlile said...

Anti-Steriods
I believe in the pureness of professional sports. Especially in Major League Baseball the sport has been tainted by the use of steriods by athelete. I believe this is wholly wrong because baseball and all sports are meant to be played with natural talent and ability.

Minny said...

I believe in effort; although luck and chance do help (or not) people, i think success comes from how hard one works towards it; the effort that one puts out in order to achieve that goal.

Arora said...

I believe in the power of belief. I have never had trouble doing the things that I really wanted to do (or at least, I have managed to do them despite the trouble) but I have seen so many people fail because they don't believe in themselves. So, since I believe I can do anything I set my mind to, I can.
I also believe that whatever higher powers or lack of higher powers there are, people will see what they believe in and want to see. Or, as atheists, people would see no evidence of higher powers.... and because I believe this, I can't decide if there are higher powers or not.

Arora said...
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Eric said...

Fred, (Kate), in response to your first post I think that you have much more than just your own experiences to rely on that belief. Most everyone has been in situations that have seemed like the world is going to end but then at the last second the people closest to you will help you get out of that "hole". I believe that is how you can tell your true friends from just acquaintances. The true friends will help you out of these, or any sort of pickle you might be in.

As for the topic posed by Amelia and Andi I completely agree with them both. I can think of many a time where I would have loved to just stop being attracted to someone but the fact of the matter is, as humans, we can't. That is part of life and being a human being, like Andi stated, whether or not we are hetero or homosexual and to discriminate against people over something on which they have no control is completely screwed up.

Jessi G said...

i guess i believe somewhat in fate (for lack of a better word). not that you are destined to do this particular thing at this particular time but that things happen to you for a reason. there is something you are supposed to learn from that experience and, i trust the universe in believing that everything it going to work out how it is supposed to, not always necesarily how you want it to. i guess fate doesn't really describe what i am trying to say

Erin said...

I firmly believe that I have a liver. Although I myself have never seen my liver, every scientific source on the topic that I have encountered on human anatomy confirms that a liver is an important part of the body. Since I am a human,and I have not experienced any abnormal discomfort or diseases, I assume that I also posses a liver.

Antonia said...

One belief that I've always had and which I realize is becoming more important as I get older, is to always keep an open mind, especially when meeting new people. By having an open mind, it is much easier to actually get to know someone, since there are no existing judgements. This way, judging people based on their race, gender, or clothes they wear is averted. Since stereotypes never actually apply to the individual person, it is much better to ignore them all together when meeting someone new, this way, instead of basing your knowledge on what other people have told you, just form your own opinions. I was walking through CSU campus the other day and met this guy who was wearing the craziest colored clothes, had his hair spiked in every direction and just had the most random appearance ever. I started talked to him and within 2 minutes, figured out that he was a business major and that he would like to become a CEO at an insurance company. Would have never guessed that looking at him :)

Tess Santangelo said...

i believe in being able to do whatever you want... not being tied to all the fate and destiny stuff.

Taylor Dolak said...

Lets see... I think that hard work is the most important ingredient in life. Anything you want to achieve or be can happen if you work your butt off and believe. :)

Abby McKennan said...

I truly believe in living every day to the fullest and letting go of regret.

Mia said...

I believe that abortion should be kept legal until three months into the pregnancy. I don't support women who get pregnant all the time and then just have an abortion to deal with it, but there are some situations where it is necessary. There are times when people are way to young to have a child or there are medical reasons. Many people say that it is unfeeling of the women to "kill" their child, but it is usually very hard for them to do. My mom worked as a social worker in a clinic for a few months. She talked with the women before and after the procedure and they were anything but calm and collected. The decision to have an abortion was extremelly difficult and emotionally taxing. Abortion is a personal decision and shouldn't be made into a national one.

Joel D. said...

I believe that there are some things that don't need a logical justification. In the spirit of this assertion, I will present no evidence to support this claim.

In all seriousness though, I do believe that the most basic questions of life (origins, meaning, afterlife, etc.) cannot be answered. This is not to say that I don't believe a particular answer to those questions, I just don't believe that my answer, or anyone else's, will ever be proven.

sarah derosier said...

A belief that I hold dear is doing one's best not to harm others. I know it's pretty much impossible to never hurt anyone, because whether intentional or not harm is just something that's going to happen. I justify that belief in my mind by considering what most laws boil down to. Theft: harming the victim. Plagiarism: harming the victim. Suicide: harming yourself. Murder. Abuse. Tax fruad. SOMEONE gets hurt. It seems to me that preventing harm seems to be the object of most regulations.

Ian K. said...

I have a quote on a magnet that hangs on my desk at home. It says "Life is not about finding yourself, life is about creating yourself". It expresses my beliefs that you hold the power in your own life, and that most of success is just hard work, not stumbling on some great thing (finding yourself).

Taylor G. said...

I believe in the concept of fate. But the curious thing about any distinction between fate and free will is there is no complete and logical justification of which is more correct. As much as I claim to believe in fate, I cannot prove it is any more than a theory.

PurplyPurp said...

I firmly believe it is to late for the world to be saved from pollution, global warming, and etc. We have already caused to much damage, and how the heck are we going to thrive if we cant industrialize! I say we turn earth into a big industrial plant, and just move to mars or something. Earth is DOOMED!

firefeather said...

sorry purplyPurp, but i disagree. I believe that because we (or ancestors of the current "we") made the decisions to ruin the earth, "we" have responsibility to try and clean it up. Like i tell my little brother and sister: "if you made the mess, you've got to clean it up." I believe this is true for all humankind. It seems that the more we industrialize and ruin the earth, the more we ourselves suffer. So even if it is for a selfish purpose, it may well be worth it to try and fix things.

Ilya said...

Fred, Eric, I fully agree with both of you - and to your first comment, Fred, I will link my belief: the world is a lot of of coincidences thrown together, with a sprinkle of Fate's choices thrown in..... reason being, the world is much more complex than we can ever know (as Joel says regarding the most basic of life questions). We humans are but one of millions of species and beings on Earth, and even when you combine all known life, we are but a speck of dust in the Universe, so how could we possibly find out everything about it? We're merely a tiny part of the machine, so we can't see the big picture - it's like being in the middle of the forest: you can see all the trees, but you can't see the forest itself, not for what it is. Or a computer, and being merely one of the microchips inside - we can only know so much, and there will always, regardless of how much we learn and how hard we try, there will ALWAYS be mysteries surrounding life, the Earth, Fate, and everything else. Because of this, I feel everyone should be free to have their own beliefs about these elusive concepts/things - it won't hurt anyone if people's beliefs differ on subjects that have no right answer....

Ilya said...

Taylor, I think Fate's another one of those mysteries that will remain mysteries forever - how can we prove that it does or does not exist? But before we can do that, what would you define fate as?

Whether or not Fate exists, though, total free will is definitely non-existent, no? There are always limitations on what we can do as humans, be they physical (flying, telekinesis, etc.), mental (even the most brilliant genius can only be *so* brilliant), or one of our own creations (laws, for instance). The first two are really quite similar, I admit, yet they are also the better example of fate, I feel - at some point in evolution, there was either a coincidence, or one of Fate's choices, that limited what we could do as well as determining what modern humans are like....

So, whether or not Fate exists is largely a matter of deciding on what exactly fate is... just to add, I agree with you on that - while there is no way to tell whether it does(n't) affect us, fate is a concept I believe in, even if it ends up just being a bunch of coincidences....

Noah P said...

I believe that the environment is a precious resource to be respected and cared for. For many of my friends and I, the environment is a sanctuary in which we escape our daily lives. There is no place that I would rather be than in a quiet stretch of the woods on a backpacking trip. Unfortunately, this view is not held by many people. Many people believe that the environment comes second the the comfort of people. They would rather see a oil rig that will only supplement the economy for twenty years than a peaceful, gorgeous area that could be enjoyed by many people and wildlife for infinite years to come.

Ilya said...

So now I have no choice but to bring up my concept of destiny, since it fits with fate to some extent....

I believe in an unusual version of Destiny, one that affects your whole life, but only directly controls relatively small things in our lives: a personality trait, your origins, other fundamental things that make up who we are. That, in turn, affects everything else in our lives - what we enjoy, who we fancy, what type of chocolate we like, where we want to live, and what little oddities are to be found in our rooms (for me I have an old timer I was given and never gave back stuck to the side of my speakers.... why? 'tis what I do...). Thus, by affecting our personalities, Destiny dictates what will happen, but not necessarily how - if something huge and life-changing is meant to happen - going somewhere, meeting someone, doing something - it will happen eventually, if not one way, then another.

What's my justification? It's just a bit too sad living in a world where everything is coincidental, that's all - it's impossible to prove Destiny to exist or not, at least with any knowledge the human race seems line up to discover in the next couple centuries.... if we ever learn all there is to learn about the Universe (disproving my first claim), we'll find out, but I doubt any of us will be around then to see that day.

Ilya said...

Also, I firmly believe that Blogger should NOT automatically make everyone's name lowercase. It's improper grammatically, and while more stylish at times, it does nothing good here, making names look odd and destroying any aesthetic goals that people may have in choosing the name that they will be listed as when posting.

Lauren P said...

I agree with durrie, though in a diferent way. I am not religious, and have many times seen how poeple can treat one based on this small, irrelevant fact. Many times I have been told that when i die, i will go to Hell, simply because I don't go to their church. I have had friends' parents tell me that I am never alowed to talk to their kids again, because I am "corupting" them, though I never intentionaly raise the religion subject. To tell the truth, I don't really care if someone is religious or not; as long as they do not enfource their ideas onto me, (and I do not force mine onto them,) we can get along just fine. And this is something can can be aplied to more than just religion.

Amelia A. said...

Joel, I completely agree with you! I've been able to state it as succinctly and intelligently as you did, but you took the words right out of my brain and wrote them down. Very creative, very "true!"

Pfiester said...

I believe in Karma. I believe that what goes around comes around, what goes up must come down, all that groovy jazz. I don't have logical justifications for this belief, but through personal experience I've learned that you get out of life what you put into it. If you treat other people and things with respect, that is how you are treated. And the reverse as well, the more you disrespect and mistreat people, the more miserable you become. Its this belief that helps me deal with difficult situations and people. Its a comforting thought when something totally unreasonably bad and unfair happens to you, and then you remember that things will straighten out. To that tune I also have to agree with Fred on serendipity, I have also had personal experiences where things just worked out wonderfully at the least unsuspecting times.

annelise gilsdorf said...

I believe that human life is sacred and something that should be respected at all costs. I believe that human beings are valuable in any form whether this means that they are octogenarians or babies still in their mother's womb. I justify this through my own experiences as a human being and through my faith in the fact that human beings are each "fearfully and wonderfully made" no matter their size, skin color or intellectual ability. In my relatively short life I have yet to meet a person who is worthless or who can't teach me something.

Ben Baroch said...

I believe that running is the only true sport. I ask everyone to think about this. Football plays games. Soccer plays games. Tennis and Volleyball play games. Runners race. Therefore, while competitors participate in activities and are undeniably athletes, they do not do sports. ultimately, all they do is play games.

Kaelee said...

i believe God has our days numbered we just don't know what day we are on so live life to the absolute fullest!

Michelle Madsen said...

I believe in Annalise's comment about how each life is valuable, my justification is my sister. When my my mother had her Amniocentesis test they told her my younger sister would be completely handicapped, and tried to persuade her to get an abortion, thankfully my mum refused and I have a beautiful healthy little sister!

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Erin said...

On the topic of fate and free will, are they really mutually exclusive? As Minny said, effort (a matter of free will) is closely related to opportunity (likely to be seen as fated). Perhaps it is possible that fate is merely a simplified explanation for the complexities in the patterns of free will.

Durrie said...

I don't think they're mutually exclusive at all. Free will is making your own decisions- what will you wear today, what will you say? (knowledge?) But fate is completely different- it's more of a destination that you arrive at. Maybe there are multiple ways you'll arrive there, but it will eventually happen. I guess that could be considered a "belief".

Ali said...

I believe in myself.
That souns a little weird at first, but really, i value every last little itty-bitty piece of my life.

I'm glad that i've got what i've got, and in a sense, i'm even glad for the bad parts.

I suppose, you could say i just believe in happiness.
:)

tpau said...
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tpau said...

I believe that you should try to see the good in every person you meet, even if you are at odds with someone there is always something that makes them unique and admirable. I also think that you learn something from every person you meet. By seeing good in everything your view of the world and people around you lightens.
Ashley

Ryan Beethe said...

Well Ben, the Concise Oxford Dictionary (tenth ed.) defines "sport" as, "an activity involving physical exertion and skill in which an individual or team competes against another or others for entertainment." I guess you might see running as entertaining, but I hate it. So I could never technically define it as a sport, since it's not for entertainment. On the other hand, football seems to fit the bill pretty well...

And Ali, I totally agree with what you said, to the word. I'm really happy to be me.


As for my official belief, I don't just believe in "faith" in general, I believe in Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. God created us to be with him, but our sins ruined that. The only sacrifice great enough to pay for every single person's every single sin was the death of Jesus Christ. He was fully God and fully Human, he rose from the dead after three days to validate his claim to divinity, and eternal life awaits anyone who trusts in Him alone. (wow, all of Christianity in 63 words... I skipped a lot)

I'll try to make my justification brief, too. We can trust that the text of the New Testament is quite accurate to the original manuscripts, since there are roughly 24,970 ancient manuscripts that all say the same thing (McDowell, The New Evidence that Demands a Verdict). I think there's only 10% variance across all of the texts. So when the New Testament says that each apostle disowned Jesus during his crucifixion (to save their own lives), I believe it. Then, after claiming to have seen Jesus, nearly every one of these apostles was eventually martyred. If Christ wasn't really God in the flesh, if he never rose from the dead, then they of all people would have known it.

Would you die for a lie?

But please, do challenge me.

Sarah Dean said...

so i definately agree with sophia in that everything happens for a reason, and that there are no coincidences. how can you explain the extreme "coincidences" and wierd things that happen on a day to day basis? For example, i watched this tv show that had to do with the postage protesting in england a while ago, and this was something i had never heard of before, and then the next day there was a documentary on this very protest on pbs. Not that I'm saying like, "oh i was meant to see this!" but i dont think it was a mere random coincidence.

Vincent Levinger said...

I believe in divine intervention. Sure, I accept evolution, but I just don't have that much faith in it happening at random. I believe taht there has to be someone that causes the changes that happen. I think that things happen for a reason and that intelegent design is the only explanation for these changes.

Tae Naqvi said...

I do not believe that morality exists distinct from survival and emotion. When we consider something immoral, it is because we consider it unpleasant or do not wish to endure it. For example, we say that killing someone is immoral. This is only because we do not wish to be killed. We say that inflicting pain is immoral because it is unpleasant. Morality is not some overarching concept inherent to humanity- merely an amalgam of survival and emotion, albeit one that is necessary for society.

Big D said...

I believe that the world is going where it is going, any actions that we do have no effect on the outcome or are predetermined

Bismah A. said...

I believe that growing up is most of the time over rated, especially growing up too fast. I enjoy the little things in life, and I think that a day without laughter is a day wasted. Taking life and the things in it too seriously can reduce the amount of enjoyment for all involved. Sometimes we are the most mature when we realize that growing up and being mature isn't really all that its cracked up to be.

Matt Beall said...

I believe so many things, it is so hard to decide where to start. I saw some other people discussing homosexuality, and so I guess I will tackle that issue.

First of all, I would like everyone to be aware that this is really what I think. If you talked to my parents, they would have very different opinions on the subject. Truth is that is my step-mother and my father. My biological mother on the otherhand is a different situation.

I have come in contact with several people who have identified themselves as homosexual. My mother is one of them. She went through a period in time where she was in great depression, and also she kept having bad relationships with men. Choice or not, homosexuality is a lifestyle. I would go to say it is society that molds people, and that homosexuality has been around from the beggining of time. Really, I think that all people have a need to develop relationships. Friends, Boyfriends/Girlfriends, Husbands/Wives, Family....we need relationships. There is no fine line between these relationships sometimes, other than in definition. I would not say that homosexuals are confused, but I would say that they are often in these relationships that are in the fuzzy area. It is not the job of others to define what it is, it is between the people that are involved in the relationship.

At the same time, I do not think that same-sex marriage is ok. My biggest problem is calling it marriage. Once again, I think it is all about defining it. Marriage is between a man and a woman. If we decide to come up with some other term for a bond between a woman-woman or man-man lifetime relationship, I would be fine with that. They could have all the same rights, benefits, whatever.....just don't call it marriage.

Any thoughts?

s_to_the_donnelly said...

I have always held my relegion as a vital part of my true self. I believe heavily in god and I do not have any specific evidence, other than billions of people on this earth who share my belief. There is no evidence that is able to tear me from my belief in god.

Paigeypoo said...

I believe in fate. This is a very deep and complex thought. But i do believe that certain people who are in a certain place at a certain time, for some big and important event, that could be life altering, are meant to be there. Life is mapped out, but there are many different paths to take on that map, but it all ends at the same place. Now I don't know if I am really getting this across, but it is what I believe.

JWolff said...

I believe that if you set your mind to an attainable goal, you will be able to reach it. How many times have you been the underdog in a contest or needed to do something that seems impossible? Especially with athletes during tight games or blowout scores? If the team or the single individual sets their mind to that task and solely thinks on it, they can achieve it. A personal experience of mine was during last year's Poudre Softball. Rocky was our second game of the season, their season opener that they haven't lost for like 2 years. We weren't expected to beat them, especially being the second game of the season and going up against the defending state champions. But we did. We were down by 5 in the 6th inning (playing 7 innings in total with Rocky getting 2 more chances to bat and possibly score more). Before getting up to bat, the whole team came together and we set our minds to cutting Rocky's lead at the least. End of the 6th, we had tied the game up. 7th inning came roaring in with 2 more runs and a solid defence for us to beat the state champs in their season opener. By setting our minds to the task at hand, we were able to win as the underdogs. Same thing happened in Regionals, battled to a tie and went extra innings to win and beat the second ranked team of our region. It works and its infectious

PurplyPurp said...
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PurplyPurp said...
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PurplyPurp said...

I disagree! Your example doesnt refute the argument that there are no coincidences.It simply shows that protesting in England is a big subject, so you were bound to here about it agian eventually. Its not a matter of reason or 'fate', but probability. It was highly probable that you would see something on the protests in England because it is important to a lot of people, and when you role a 4-5-6 in a game of dice, that never happened for a reason, it was probability. Also, reason is relative, and your perception of things may completely change your reasons, making it superfulous compared to probability. MATH RULES!

PurplyPurp said...
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hockeysuto22 said...

What do i believe in? Honestly this is a question i have struggled with for quite some time recently. I do have a strong belief in God and that he sent his son Jesus Christ to die for all of my sins. Honestly, i believe this a little bit on what i have read in the bible and my own personal experiences with "miracles" and that "stuff." However, much of my faith in God comes directly from emotion. I have been to the lowest of low places and i have experienced extreme hardship. For me, going to God and praising him for what he has dond through reading and playing the guitar/singing really makes me understand that I am a human and make mistakes like everyone else. However, i believe that God has unending grace and that i am set free because of what he has done. I also believe strongly that friendships and relationships can either help or hinder your life. They can either make or break you. Subconciously, we do and become who we hang around with and what we spend our time doing. I believe in life, love, and the pursuit of happiness

hockeysuto22 said...
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Laura Jo Washle said...

I believe in the power of positive thinking. Meaning that if you focus on something hard enough and with a positive attitude, things will turn out the way you want them to. I don't know if this is pre-determined destiny or what, but i believe it is true..."What you focus on expands"

Simone said...

What I believe is that all life is precious. This morning when I drove to school, in the lane opposite me I saw a dead fox on the raod. Its tail was severed and lying a foot away from the rest of its body, there was nothing recognizable about the rest of its body besides four perfect little black paws that were still connect to its mangled shape. The tail hadn't been run over; it was fluffy and pristine; a beautiful reddish gold color against the harsh black asphalt. I honestly started crying, it made me so sad, and I wanted to find whoever had been going to fast or hadn't bothered to swerve to avoide the fox, and scream at them.
Life takes a lot of energy to create and maintain. What we don't realize a lot is that it takes so much less to destroy it.

Ryan, I'm gonna have to challenge you. My question for you is how one man's death could pay for the sins of humanity. What makes that man so special? His love for other people? People's love for him? His birth?
And hundreds of thousands of people in history have died for lies. It was what they belived to be true, like you believe the concept of Christ to be true. Not saying that Christ is a lie.

Michael W. said...

I believe in people.
When I was small, one thought that was interesting to me was the fact that it could be possible that I could be the only one in the world that was real. REAL. Not a robot or something.
Or maybe life was a test that if I passed, I could move on to live with other REAL people.
But of course I've learned a lot since then. Psychology offered many reasons as to why I thought myself as the only one in the world. Not only that, but experiences with family and in different camps and stuff have taught me a lot about people.
Sure I believe in fate and other different things that choose what happens in our lives, but I think that these things that happen to us are because of our own decisions or the decisions of the people around us.
That is why I believe in people.
Yet I wonder, are there limits to what different people can do? If we look at the Olympics for example, Is it or will it ever be posssible to beat say... 9 sec on the 100 meter dash or be faster than that each of us can do?
Anyways, I believe in People and the human race, but I think it will take all of us in order to succeed in the ... I guess Universe.

the bee gee said...

I believe that life is an endless void of trials and tribulations, rewards and jubilation. What you put into it is what you get out of it. Humans are confined to the environments which they create for themselves. The emotions you feel are a product of your willingness or unwillingness to deal with your current situation. Contentment comes from acceptance that at any given point the fact that you are where you are and doing what you are doing has been a result of an intricate chain of events over which you had complete control. When you feel that you have been wronged, to blame others for it only causes negative emotions which hurt you and those around, because negativity spreads. It is important to remain optimistic, otherwise this universe is a very dull place to exist.

christine said...

I believe in the one God that made the heavens, earth, and universe. I can't really justify this belief for other people, but I can justify it for myself because of the experiences I've been through.

Lynda L. said...

I agree with Mia that abortion should be a personal decision. I don't it's right for people to determine whether abortion should be legal or illegal. It really depends on the situation. Like, what if a girl was somehow raped and found out she was pregnant? Unless the girl has a really good heart or strong morals about killing innocent life, I don't think she'd want to have the baby. Abortion is a touchy subject, but for the right reasons, it should be an option and available to people who need it.

Cynthia Santos said...
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Cynthia Santos said...

I want to go to Selina's comments about religion and how it somehow affects the outlook on life. I think that it's very true because what is between one and God is private. He is the one person that I can go to for guidance and inspiration. When I have a hard decision to make I know that he will be there for me. With God there is hope. I'm just happy that he understands me.

A-Dog said...

I believe that a person can judge a place by its bathrooms. This claim is based on travels around the world to many very diverse places. If a bathroom is clean, then the place is sophisticated. If the bathroom uses fancy sink or paper towel technology, then the place is probably eco-friendly. If the bathroom is just plain gorgeous, then the place is fancy and rich, and cares about its image. If the bathroom has big mirrors or good shower water pressure, then at least the place is attempting to make the guests happy. If the bathroom has real, thick, soft, toilet paper,then the place really does care about your comfort.,....

Ryan Beethe said...

Simone:

My answer to your question starts with Genesis 3, where God is laying out punishments for the human race out after the Fall of Man. One of them is death, which is the basic principle for the sacrificial system that Jews held in Biblical times; if you sinned something had to die to pay for it. Simply put, if you didn't want to die, you could sacrifice an animal in your place. The greater the sin, the greater the sacrifice should be. A small sin could be paid with a pigeon, or an entire community's sin could be paid with a bull. But there isn't an animal alive that could pay for the sins of all of humanity through all of time. In fact, one man's death couldn't even pay for it. But Jesus was fully man and fully God, so his crucifixion was much more than the death of one man, it was the death of the human part of God. While his love for others and his birth do make him special (he was actually very unpopular during most of his life), it was the fact that he was God that makes him a suitable sacrifice.

Regarding your second statement, many people have indeed died for lies, but nobody dies for a lie if they don't believe it. I was trying to say that if Jesus had risen, he was indeed God. Since every apostle (minus Judas) claimed to see Jesus resurrected and his ascent into Heaven, they would know if it was all a lie or not. And they died for Him, so I believe that it was not a lie.

Kathryn said...

Today in history Mr. Lynam mentioned the butterfly effect, and i guess thats something i want to talk about. I believe in the domino effect of events, maybe not to the extent of everything changing because a butterfly got stepped on but that every action leads to a different situation after it. So i really believe in making decisions wisely and thinking about what will happen as a result of those decisions.

Simone said...
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Simone said...

Well, Ryan...

The sacrifice aspect makes sense. Blood pays for blood, and the more blood, the more content gods are. And the more precious the blood, (Christ's, for example) well, that just evens everyone out.
I would like to challenge that Christ was God. My own personal belief is that god(s) are all around us, present in the earth, sun, moon, water, even the plants. They are the earth, thus you worship the earth. Sometimes they can take human forms, but it would be the greatest, well, sin (I don't like that word)... transgression, that's better. The greatest transgression is to harm the god, and kill them in their form in order to excuse past transgressions.
Does that make any sense?
So my question is, if he was God, why was he killed? Would he not be worshipped on earth by his followers? My Bible schooling is minimum, but I know enough that it wasn't his followers that strung him up. Did he just decide, 'Well, heck, my calendar is free today, so I might as well just die and pay for humanity's sins today.' In my understanding, you make a sacrifice when you fear retribution from the gods, or wish to make a request of them. At that point in history had humanity reached a tipping point where either Jesus died or everyone got flooded out?

Megan said...

All my relatives are very religious but I've never had a strong concept of faith. One thing that my great grandmother (who was very devout) said has always stuck with me: "A grateful thought towards heaven is the perfect prayer". I am grateful everyday for what I have. Although I am not secure in my religious beliefs and I don't usually pray, I think people need to appreciate their health, their family, their friends or whatever else every once in a while. We tend to ignore it until we are reminded just how lucky we are.

Hannah said...

Wow. I agree with a lot of the things posted on this blog, especially what Amelia, Andi, Mia, Durrie, Lauren, and Simone said.

My personal belief goes with Sophia's. I truly believe that everthing happens for a reason and you have to trust that no matter what you are going through.
Personal example: When I was in sixth grade my dad's work wanted to move my family to Iowa. We agreed under the condition that if we stayed there for a year they would move us to Germany for a few years and he would work for a branch of the company there. Just before our year was up, though, they moved us back to Fort Collins. We were all really upset, until a few weeks after we moved back here my sister got really sick. She ended up needing a liver transplant and lucky for us we were close to Children's Hospital in Denver. She got the transplant and is fine, but if we had been in Germany, who knows what would have happened. Especially because none of us speak the language.

And for Ben: What about gymnastics?

Meredith Wheeler said...

I believe that morality and religion are distinct entities, and I justify this both through abstract intellectual information (i.e. what I read and watch as a consumer of media) as well as my personal religious background. Religion is used to justify many immoral deeds, as is atheism, and I believe that in many ways morality is bigger than religion. Religion shapes you, and for many people it informs belief (for right or wrong) but morality defines you. For example, while I recognize the validity of faith-based organizations abroad, I believe religion corrupts morality. Would people volunteer money and time if it were not for religion? I like to think the answer is yes, and so I think there should be a secular alternative, almost to prove that morality and the values of volunteerism do not have to be spread to proselytize a belief system. For a rather epic debate on this topic between the atheist author Christopher Hitchens and the Reverend Al Sharpton, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWt8a1aMkZ4

tucker said...

i believe that people are good. Whether or not i think that what they are doing is right, by their standards, they are doing right, which makes them good. Seriously, think about it. Hitler believed he was doing the world a favor, the 9/11 terrorists believed that God told them to run the plane into the world trade center, therefore making it 'good'. Even the joker in the new batman movie justified his actions because he believed that showing the planners that only chaos is fair by creating it is right. I think it is also important to add that i believe that if you do right by your standards, you are good.

Ryan Beethe said...

Simone:

Certainly, killing God seems like it would be a terrible thing to do, I agree. The catch is that Jesus was only ever born as human so that he could die. The prophet Isaiah, who wrote circa 700 BC, prophesized of Jesus,

He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows... Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:2-5)

So the answer is, although he was God, there was nothing physically visible about him to prove he was God. In fact when he claimed to be God, they accused him of blasphemy and tried to stone him, twice (John 8, 10). In spite of his many miracles, the Jews were expecting their Messiah to come in the form of a great military leader who would rid them of Roman control, and this also contributed to his being crucified. When he was crucified, by the way, he didn’t have any followers. Even the disciples had each disowned him in favor of not also being crucified. The people killing him thought they were killing a terrible blasphemer. It’s not as if they said, “Hey, here’s some divine blood, let’s spill it to save ourselves.” Rather, God sent Jesus knowing he would be crucified, and accepted his crucifixion as payment for every person’s sins. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” So Jesus is really a free gift, a sort of loophole way through which God will grant us eternal life, just because he really loves us that much.

As for the question of “why now?”, the brief answer is that humanity had met the necessary conditions in its development to understand the need for Jesus. If Jesus had died before Adam and Eve ever ate from the tree, his sacrifice would have been the same, but humanity wouldn’t understand why it needed to be done yet. I can go into more detail on this subject, if anyone cares to hear.

CJ said...

I have always held a certain thought and it has slowly formed into a belief that I have created for myself and that is I think that many, many problems humans have are caused by the removal of control from their lives. Why do claustrophobic people freak out when placed in confined areas? Because they have no control over how much space they are given to move around in. Why is it that jail has been used as a punishment in many different societies for so many years? Because people know that the hardest thing for a person to deal without is their control over their actions. They are constantly having their actions dictated by someone else and it is hard on the human spirit. Obviously this is only a personal belief or acquaintance knowledge, but I have observed many people and seen many different situations where a person cannot control something and they go insane trying to control it by any means possible.

I. Kennedy said...

I agree with Ilya's dislike of the lowercase naming convention on blogger. I beleive grammatical correctness is necessary for accurate human communication. If you make errors in speech or writing, people could easily misunderstand what you mean, leading to a wrongly justified series of events. For example, a description of a panda's diet is "eats shoots and leaves". If someone hit the comma key, you get "eats, shoots, and leaves", a completely different statement. I'm not sure if blogger goes to this extent, but the idea is the same.

Simone said...
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Simone said...

Ryan...

I'm still confused as to the fact why God (loving father, yes?) would send his only son to be killed by humanity, or, the Romans, to be more precise. Further confusion results from my not comprehending why on earth he considered the death of his son repayment for humanity's sins. The greatest sin is payment for all the other sins? So to make up for all the little sins I have committed all I have to do is kill someone important? Or was killing Christ not considered a sin?
So I now know why Christ wasn't killed earlier, but why was he killed then? There were much fewer people in the world at that point, so less sinning, yes? Much less genocide had occurred, less world wars, no neighbors in a lot of the world so no neighbors to hate, and Mercedes weren't around, so you couldn't covet what someone else had. My point is less sinning had happened. Why not have Christ show up now so we can kill him? We could certainly use a 'free gift' at the moment.

Simone said...
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leahreynolds said...

I believe its important for every person to learn a second language.
Connecting and understanding people from different backgrounds has always been of interest to me. I love traveling and being completely out of my element. This is where having an open mind comes in handy. To be able to listen and appreciate the other customs and beliefs is vital in the search for what you believe in. If there was only one side to everything I would feel like my life was drawn out for me. Allthough it can sometimes be hard to choose I still like to have my choices and I enjoy meeting other people from different backgrounds along the way. The reason I think learning another language is important is just for that reason. You can learn to interact with the people on a deeper level and be introduced to their history and values.

Liz I. said...

my whole life i have been raised a catholic but recently i have been beginning to question my beliefs. i only have one general belief relating to religion, and that is that there is a God. the proof is everything we have around us, all of creation. it seems to me that there must be some greater force behind everything, something that initiated everything and put things in motion. there is a greater plan behind our lives and for earth. with all of the miraculous things around us it makes one wonder if there is a God...i would argue that there is.

Liz I. said...

my whole life i have been raised a catholic but recently i have been beginning to question my beliefs. i only have one general belief relating to religion, and that is that there is a God. the proof is everything we have around us, all of creation. it seems to me that there must be some greater force behind everything, something that initiated everything and put things in motion. there is a greater plan behind our lives and for earth. with all of the miraculous things around us it makes one wonder if there is a God...i would argue that there is.

Liz I. said...

my whole life i have been raised a catholic but recently i have been beginning to question my beliefs. i only have one general belief relating to religion, and that is that there is a God. the proof is everything we have around us, all of creation. it seems to me that there must be some greater force behind everything, something that initiated everything and put things in motion. there is a greater plan behind our lives and for earth. with all of the miraculous things around us it makes one wonder if there is a God...i would argue that there is.

Liz I. said...

my whole life i have been raised a catholic but recently i have been beginning to question my beliefs. i only have one general belief relating to religion, and that is that there is a God. the proof is everything we have around us, all of creation. it seems to me that there must be some greater force behind everything, something that initiated everything and put things in motion. there is a greater plan behind our lives and for earth. with all of the miraculous things around us it makes one wonder if there is a God...i would argue that there is.

Lindsey Goris said...

I beleive in God and i beleive that he sent his son, Jesus to die for my sins. i beleive this partly through faith, and partly through my own experiances, and through what i've read in the bible. I also agree with what Cynthia said about how God is the one person I can go to for guidance or when I have to make a difficult decision. It means a lot to me that he understands me, and has forgiven me, because i've messed up, and i've done things i regret just like everyone else, but beleiving that God has fogiven me, and that he loves me has allowed me to learn from my mistakes and move on.

Lindsey Goris said...

Another completely unrelated beleif that is important to me is the beleif that all life is valuable, not just human life. I beleive that animals can feel and that they deserve respect. By this I mean that i think it is wrong to kill, or mistreat animals for any reason or purpose. To me that means not eating them, hunting them for sport, testing on them, or using them as entertainment (in shows, rodeos, circuses etc.) I beleive this from my experience with animals, both those I've had as pets, and those I've seen in the wild. Scientific fact also supports this beleif. It has been proven that animals can feel pain just like we can and because of this I think that they need to be treated respectfully, which, unfortunately, they often aren't.

Nathan Beta said...

I believe in agency. each human is born with the ability to distinguish right and wrong. this ability separates us from the animals of the world. it is the foundation of our societal laws, and our morally based culture. as a result of this knowledge, we have agency; the power to choose between right and wrong. both choices are completely and always available, as long as we are willing to accept the concequences.

Kelsey B said...

This is really something that I have come to believe in as I get older, but I believe that there are somethings that you need to discover for yourself in order for them to have meaning. Throughout life people, especially parents, are always trying to give you the bennefit of their experience and trying to help you learn from their mistakes and I am not saying that this is never valuable, but I think that there are some times when you really do have to make your own mistakes. There are instances when looking at other peoples actions can be good, but I really think that a lot of the time, even if you come to the same conclusion that your parents, or whoever, were telling you in the first place, it means more when you get there on your own. I guess what I am really getting at is that I believe that a lot of the time, it is not the concluding belief or realization that is important, but rather how you got there that makes the difference.

Audrey said...

Super interesting thought CJ...I'm going to play off it and say that I believe that sometimes you just have to accept that you can't control everything, or (as you said) go nuts trying. I think one of the easiest ways to be happy is to just accept that you can control nothing and quit trying. Of course, that approach is pretty much the same as rejecting any kind of responsiblity towards society, the world, etc., so it's not necessarily the right thing to do. The trick is having the capacity to tell the difference.

Brittany said...

What i believe is that anything is possible. I don't have any religious faith, but I don't specifically believe that it doesn't exist. This doesn't mean i believe it is real either. I think that there could be a such thing as ghosts that are invisible, or aliens on another planet and we would never know. If something was smarter than humans and always one step ahead of us they could hide from us forever. There's as much proof against it as there is against God, so if one is possibly possible, why not the other? Why not anything, for that matter?

Karam said...

I believe in many things, but one of the more significant beliefs that I hold in my life is the concept of faith. Because I am a believer of the religion of Islam, my religion does hold a very significant role in my life. I wake up, pray, eat, go to school, pray , do homework, pray again, and pray one more time before I sleep. So, it is clearly evident that my religion and faith plays a significant role in my life. I've also noticed that most of my actions are influenced by my faith as well. If someone were to ask me if I wanted to drink, smoke, or do drugs, my FAITH would restrain me from doing so. Of course, my personal judgement would also refrain me from doing so as well. But the point is that my faith and the religion of Islam is the basis and foundation of all my beliefs that I hold in this world.

Dylan Sublette said...

I believe that we make our own destiny, not that our lives have already been written. I hold this believe because I believe that our daily choices make us who we are no matter how small the choice. I believe it leads ta a consequence on a larger scale.

Nick Jordan said...

I grew up Christian, and I am definitely not Christian anymore. I certainly don't renounce the entire religion, however I started thinking about things, questioning my beliefs, and wondering about how some of the absolutes presented in the religion could be true. (ask me about it if you really want to know) However, I believe that living a Christian life would be one of the best ways to live. For instance always respecting others, giving to the poor, recognizing that humans have weaknesses and commit sin. Also, I believe that if you look at all the major religions of the world and truth can be attained as to what is morally right. They may have their differences but their simmilarties are extremely important and I would say are universal truths. (I may have to retract this statement as I get further into TOK, and we learn about univeral truths, but for now I stand by it)

Ryan Beethe said...

Simone:

When you love someone, you make sacrifices for them. Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep,” (John 10:11). God, being our loving father, sent his son to die in our places. Although we deserved to die for our sins, God gave us a way out. “Whoa!” you say, what kind of loving father sacrifices his son? Well, that’s where you get into the Holy Trinity. Jesus said, “I and the Father are one,” (John 10:30). So Jesus was sacrificing himself just as much as the Father was sacrificing his Son, just as much as the Father was sacrificing himself. Trinity aside, God took our pain on the cross because he loves us.

You make it sound like the people crucifying Jesus actually had the power to kill him. Jesus could have just floated down from the cross and healed himself if he so chose. It was his deliberate choice to die, as a sacrifice for us. And besides, once Jesus was chosen as our sacrificial lamb, he had to die somehow or it wouldn’t have been a very effective sacrifice. And please, don’t kill anyone, Jesus’ death already covers your sins.

The truth is, Jesus’ sacrifice didn’t just serve to forgive the sins of people who were alive at that time, it was payment for every sin that had ever been committed and for ever sin that ever would be committed. He could have died with the dinosaurs and his sacrifice would have still meant the same thing. Since God exists outside of time (2 Peter 3:8), it doesn’t really matter to him. But that only answers why Jesus COULD die then, it doesn’t answer why he actually did. As to that, I guess that mankind was ready, so why not? But who am I to know God’s mind? The important part is that the “free gift” IS for us.

LN* said...
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LN* said...

I believe that your decisions and actions in life determine who you are. One "bad" decision does not undue a lifetime of "good" ones. Also, I believe that you decide which of your decisions are "good" or "bad." Society can impose the its ideas of what is "right" and what is "wrong," but only you in the end can judge yourself the most accurately. You know yourself the best and hold the most power over your own decisions and actions.

Simone said...

Hmm Ryan....

Food for thought. I do understand, now, the basis for Christianity. Sacrifice, and forgiveness, yes? And love, of course.
I have one last question for you, and this is a little more personal, so feel free to leave no comment. Your God loves you and has forgiven for your sins (and the rest of humanity). What does that love do for you, knowing that He loves you? You also have the love of your family and friends, their forgiveness when you need it. Do you need anything more than that?

PS No, I was not thinking of killing anyone, I meant hypothetically speaking. And Ryan, sins? Who, me? ;)

Nathan B. said...

I believe in Love. Love is, in my mind, the single most beautiful, most complex entity and emotion that resovles in the human mind. Love is what has allowed our species to thrive together instead of competing in a Darwinistic-deathmatch. When nuclear warheads plumet down upon a globally warmed, racist, sexist, anarchist, and facist world, the one thing that will remain to quell all of it is love. And besides, half of The Beatles's songs our about love so it most be important.

-Nathan

Ilya said...

Nathan:

Couple questions for you: when you say Love, what exactly do you mean? Caring about people/friends, romantic love, what exactly? Also, you speak of Love as being an answer to everything - after even an event that would destroy life as we know it (brings the Earth from Wall•E to mind for me, personally) - but couldn't love gone astray trigger such a disastrous event?

Ian B said...

To bounce off the control thread [CJ, Audrey], I'd have to say that it's important to relinquish control, but the problem we run into there is that since we as a society attempt to exert control over everything, the natural order is disrupted. Combine that with our sheer numbers, and the Earth is being altered [and by no means in a good way] by our actions. Is it no wonder that we need vacations so often? Not only do we work ourselves to death, but we do so in an environment so artificial that we feel the need to, however briefly, escape from civilisation until we can once again tolerate artificiality. However, we have altered the world to such degree that the concept of wilderness, where the natural order persists, is almost alien to us, and I feel that it is necessary and justified to exert control over our desire to controlin order to avoid turning the earth to an urban dystopia.

This opinion is no doubt influenced that I find I am most at ease and happiest in the wilderness, because since nature need not be restored, I may relinquish control to the degree that I am completely free.

Had I not felt a responsibility to society, I believe I would have done something akin to Everett Ruess or Christopher McCandless, and walked into the wild with no intention to return several years ago.

As the case is now, I feel that I often have no control over my life, but also that society pushes me in the wrong direction, which ironically makes me unhappy. I would amend 'go with the flow' to 'go with the natural flow, because the flow of society is decidedly unnatural.

[sorry if repetitive]

Callie said...

I believe in kindness. I am only human and definitely not perfect, but I try to be kind to people because I have learned through experience that even if I disagree with someone, I can try to be nice to that person as a human being and they generally are respectful back. I believe not only in kindness towards other humans but towards the earth and animals. I believe this because I know that I have to live on this earth so I might as well try to treat it the best that I can for my benefit.

Ryan Beethe said...

Simone:

Well, my family and friends love me, but how many of them would die for me? My parents probably, maybe one of my three sisters, and none of my friends. And what if I develop some strange mental disease which causes me to be irritable and rude at all times? My parents would still love me, but not many others. Not that I see those as plausible circumstances, but the point is, God would still love me; God would still die for me. What I find in God is the kind of absolutely unconditional, undying love that no person can offer. Even when I feel completely awful with myself over one thing or another, it gives me strength to know that God will still forgive me. He wants to forgive me so badly he literally died for it. That’s something powerful.

Yet I don’t follow Christ because of the good feelings involved; they’re just perks. The real reason is because I believe eternal life is possible, but so is eternal death (John 3:16,17). I also believe that the only way to eternal life is through Jesus’ sacrifice (John 14:6).

A FREE gift...? I took it.

Kara said...

My father's side of the family are devote Catholics, and I have grown up around the religion and I believe in what the Church stands for. But that does not make me think that all other religions are wrong, that only Catholicism has it right. For the Bible, the Koran, the Tanakh, or any other religious book was written by man, not God. And man is not perfect, every religion agrees on that. I believe that each book has been colored by the men who have written it, and by those who interpret the teachings. There are many teachings in the Bible that I don't agree with, just as there are things that the Church has done and does still today that I am completely against. But for me, the things I dislike about the religion, not just in Catholicism but other religions as well are the influences of man, not the teachings of God. I believe that each religion has its flaws, but also represents a unique and beautiful facet of something we'll never truely understand.

meredith said...

I believe that life experiences shape us and make us who we are. I don’t think there is such thing as destiny or fate, but that only our will and our past experiences dictate the choices we make. Things don’t just happen to us; we make them happen (consciously or not) because of who we are and what we have already done in the world.

jeff_tweedy said...

I believe that there is a god of some kind, or some force that created the universe, but not that "he" influences people's actions in any way - we all have free will, and the things we do are meaningful just because, there's no greater scheme to anything. But yeah, that might sound a little pessimistic, but it really isn't... we all make our own choices, and all our good and bad choices are important... and we all have the capacity to do really good stuff, and that's meaningful in itself.

adriane g. said...

I hope to always hold tightly to the belief that everthing happens for a reason. Just to be clear, this is not to say that I believe there exists a pre-determined track that every life will follow, only that the events in a person's life are bound to build off of one another. I believe that under no circumstances should an individual view the events in his/her life as meaningless or void of purpose, because with the passing of every second something new (however big or small) is contributed. Moreover, I believe that nothing in this world should be taken for granted. We only have one life to live, so why not make the most of it?