The Brave Act of Changing Your Religious Beliefs

What I have always tried to do is provide a safe space to do that in question their beliefs. And, if possible, gather people together in order to support one another while going through this experience. I think this is what The Lasting Supper is mostly about. We are a hotbed, a petri dish, an experiment, of theological transitioning and belief-changing. It’s a place where we achieve spiritual independence.

It’s difficult to change our beliefs and to wonder if you should be leaving your religion. But, on the other hand, it’s easy. If we just follow these 3 basic steps, it will happen. In fact, I believe that if we apply the right effort, we will come to a place where our minds are finally at rest. That’s a promise!

before thinking cartoon nakedpastor david hayward

(To download this cartoon, click on the image or HERE.)

Here are the 3 steps to changing our beliefs:

Question Its Credulity 

Unfortunately, for many people this first step isn’t even allowed and therefore never contemplated. To even question a deeply embedded idea is anathema, rebellious, heretical, and therefore punishable. But this is always the first step. This isn’t the end, but it certainly is the beginning. You have to be able to get to a place where you can ask yourself, “Is this really true?” This first step starts the unstoppable process.

Consider Other Possibilities

In other words, what will replace the unhealthy, unnecessary and erroneous belief that was there before? This doesn’t mean that we replace, say, resurrection with reincarnation. Rather, we replace resurrection with questions such as, “What could this have meant?” “Why was this important?” “Does this point to a deeper truth?” “Why would someone or something want me to believe this?” “What would it mean to me if I let this belief go?”

Wait for Truth

This is the hardest part. This is exactly where many people either give up to retreat back into comfortable beliefs or leap over into other ones that are just as unhealthy, unnecessary or erroneous. It's hard to feel so vulnerable during these doubting times. Waiting for truth to come with its attending peace is sometimes a long and arduous test of patience. But I assure you that if you wait long enough, trust in love to reveal itself, that a deep and abiding truth will slip in and overthrow your fears. And the truth is not just another informational fact. Rather, it’s love and peace that transcends intellectual formulations. It’s the mind finally at rest. It does come!

Many things I used to believe have drifted away.

On the one hand, intellectually there is a deep and abiding peace. On the other hand, there is, I’ll admit, the emotional residue of fear that I’m wrong and will pay for it eternally. This takes a while to depart. It’s like the echo that resounds long after the originating sound is gone. But when I remember that perfect love casts out fear, that residue eventually loses its power over me, no longer crippling me in my own growth.

I hope this helps.

Related Resources

What Do You Do After a Spiritual Tsunami Hits?
The Art Of Finding Yourself After Leaving Your Religion
Nurturing Spiritual Health For Lasting Inner Peace

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