Last night I posted an observation on my Facebook Fan Page that after 20 years of working with people to reach success – I can conclusively state – by a very wide margin – that fear of success holds back a lot more people than fear of failure ever did.
I was surprised at the number of people who agreed, but also questioned why that was. And that question takes us back to the root cause – the mother of all prosperity blocks – worthiness issues.
And that, as a result, takes us back to the most insidious and widespread perpetrator of worthiness issues in the world for the last couple thousand years: organized religion.
If you didn’t see the extensive post I did on that subject, find it here. Lisa Jimenez raised an interesting question on that original post. She wants to know what the balance is between critical thinking and faith?
Everyone has faith. The more important question might be – what do you have faith in? Because if I have learned anything, it is this:
You don’t manifest the prosperity you deserve. You manifest the prosperity you believe you deserve.
Hebrews 11:1 proclaims, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” There’s not much I would take literally from the Bible, but that statement is one thing I would. Because faith by definition, is believing in something without proof. All religions are held together with this dynamic. And like I said, everyone has faith in something:
There are people who have faith that bad things always happen to them. “I’m always a day late and a dollar short.” “I can’t believe it! I never win anything.” “All the good guys are married or Gay.”
There are those who believe life is a struggle. They talk about “hump days” and getting to Friday. And of course there are the optimists: those of us who expect good things to happen.
There is no doubt in my mind that people who begin a venture with a positive expectation of success have a dramatically higher success rate that those that approach something expecting to fail. I don’t think there’s any mystical woo-woo factor at play here. More a case of confirmation bias, where people read things and act upon them through the lens they have created.
I’ve won more championships than I can count with different softball teams over the years. And I can categorically state that faith played a big part. I’m a bestselling author and a coach to millions around the world because I have faith. In much bigger issues, when I was shot, laying in a pool of blood on the street, or when I’ve faced life-altering decisions – my faith has pulled me through.
I have faith in myself and my abilities. And I have faith in a power bigger than myself. I honestly believe the universe is constructed in a way that is inherently good. Meaning if I create a vacuum, it will be filled with good. Not in a Pollyanna “watch The Secret 15 times and a yacht will appear in your swimming pool” kind of way, but a belief that if I visualize a thing, feel passionately about it, and work hard to manifest it, I can.
While I have faith that there is quite possibly some entity greater than myself behind the creation of the universe, I’m not so arrogant to think I know what it is. It may be universal order, nature, or some omnipotent being, but I’d be an idiot and a liar to say I know which for sure.
However, when we see the role that faith plays in organized religion today – at least the faith they are propagating – we have to ask the very real and very relevant question:
Has faith become evil?
And if not outright evil, is it really serving us any longer in today’s world? Where does the line between faith in an unknown thing and delusions of a crazy person come into play? When we see people who live, die and kill by these beliefs, the stakes rise dramatically. And millions more struggle needlessly and deprive themselves of happiness, because of a belief they have.
As human consciousness and enlightenment progresses, the need for superstitions and myths has decreased. This is apparent when you look at the people who call themselves New Age, or spiritual not religious. They could be Christians who don’t really believe that Noah took two of every dinosaur on the ark, or Muslims who don’t believe that non-believers are infidels to be converted or killed. You can’t say Christianity or Islam has evolved – neither has.
Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are all still based upon the assertion that God writes or dictates specific books. What has happened is that in today’s modern world, the discrepancies, inaccuracies and folklore in the Bible and Koran no longer stand the test of reason for a rational, intelligent person – or at least one who was not infected with mind viruses since an early age.
Neither the Bible or Koran has evolved or repudiated the slavery and barbarianism they preach. Instead, sensible followers have come to understand these books were not actually written by God, and cannot be taken literally. It’s time to seriously look at whether these books need to be on the shelf next to the stories of Neptune, Zeus, and Poseidon.
Here’s another interesting twist on the issue, that reveals another insidious way that faith – at least the kind that organized religion is dispensing these days – is actually evil…
In the last post, I wrote about the Supreme Court case on same-sex marriage and why it really is a human rights issue. Gina Carr raised a fascinating sidelight when she said, “as late as 1967 in THIS country, people were literally JAILED for marrying a person of a different race.”
Like most people of prosperity consciousness, Gina is appalled that legislation banning interracial marriage could be present in an enlightened society, especially so recently.
But here’s something she and many other may not be considering…
Many of the people who believe homosexuals should be banned from marrying also are still against interracial marriage and would ban it if they could. They can’t campaign for that in today’s political environment, but their beliefs haven’t changed. They believe their race is superior and consider mixing blood with an inferior one to be an aberration. Obviously, groups like the Nazis and KKK are not extinct, they have just moved more underground. They don’t pose as grave a danger to society, however, because their malevolence is so readily apparent.
The organizations that may be the most dangerous to your health, safety and prosperity are the organized religion ones. Because they preach prosperity and love, but all too often their real message is hate, intolerance, and programming which destroys your self-esteem.
Any rational, compassionate human upon any serious reflection would have to come to the conclusion that all human beings deserve to live free and pursue their own happiness, regarding of their gender, race, creed or sexual orientation.
Yet here in the United States, there are still a lot of Bible-thumping Bubba’s who can’t understand what all the fuss with slavery was all about. And if they came across a mob stoning a homosexual or setting them on fire, they would immediately stop to assist. The killing, that is. They would do this based on their faith.
There are millions of Muslims who believe a woman should be stoned for showing her face in public or killed if she wants to get an education. They too, believe this because it is spelled out in no uncertain terms, in the sacred book they believe in.
I’ve been studying the major (and many minor) religions of the world for almost 20 years now. I used to say that at their core, they were all about love, and this message of love had been high jacked by fundamentalist extremists.
But that really isn’t accurate.
Because realistically, the people who espouse the most exclusion, hate and intolerance – are actually the people who have the most faith in their particular religion. They are the ones who believe their particular book is the literal word of God. As a result, they have no problem with slavery, subjugating women, or murdering homosexuals and non-believers, because they can quote scripture verbatim authorizing it.
This is why I said in the last post that these are not rational, compassionate people, but are crazed zealots who persecute and kill their own people in the name of sky God superstitions. And they will kill you in the name of (and because of) their faith.
So what is the need and the role of faith today?
In times like these, faith in yourself is more important than ever. As for faith in something more, something bigger than yourself, if you have it – it needs to be an empowering faith, one that is congruent with the principles of prosperity and one that offers that same prosperity to all people.
There are too many mind viruses from religion today, teaching people that they are sorry sinners, unworthy, and that they must suffer in this lifetime to receive a reward in an afterlife. Most of these scriptures can be traced to mythology from the Iron Age, and even the Stone Age.
If your faith is based upon the belief that you are unworthy or undeserving – it doesn’t serve you. If you faith is based on the belief that you are in a chosen group and deserving of abundance that others are not – it doesn’t serve you. If your faith is built upon the premise that you are meant to suffer here to earn your way into paradise later – it doesn’t serve you.
If your faith is one where you are a co-creator of your good, and are meant to be happy, healthy and prosperous – that is a faith that serves you.
Be mindful of what you place your faith in.