Three Degrees of Beliefs

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When I was 12 years old my family moved four hours’ drive East, from Detroit to Toronto, Canada. So much in my world changed and something strange had happened; I crossed an invisible line called an international border and I felt like I was on another planet. The fear, hopelessness and distrust of the 1970’s in Detroit opened up to the optimism of immigrants in a fast growing and accepting environment with the warm attitudes and friendliness of Canadians. I was only a short drive away, but the place was clean, strangers said hello to you, and that was suddenly safe and acceptable.

Eventually I learned about the Universal Laws and how life really works – and it occurred to me that the way people think comes from what they believe, but beliefs still had nothing to do with the real Laws of Life, which do not change with circumstances or attitudes.

Beliefs create all the limitations in your life.

Once you have a set idea about something, possibilities for new options are restricted or cut off. Conscious awareness of your beliefs can allow you to sift through them and open up to new frontiers in life.

Where do we form beliefs? The source comes from three influences or degrees:

1st Degree: Experience.

We make conclusions about life from repeated painful or fulfilling experiences; right or wrong, we begin to see life through a filter of these decisions and they gain power and momentum. “I always…” “I never…” become truth, for us.

2nd Degree: Experience of others.

Our parents, teachers, friends and mentors influence us by their harsh or gentle guidance, by witnessing their repetitive behaviours and mistakes and by their stories. We hear their rules about how they think life works and we shorten our learning curve to save time and pain. But their experiences are sometimes not up to date with our world nor in sync with our values. Yet their words are often recorded in our thoughts and replay on auto pilot without us recognizing the source or checking the relevance.

3rd Degree: Dogma.

Teachings, sayings and perspectives from another time long ago can be irrelevant. Religious indoctrination, some ancient teachings handed down, old clichés, sayings that are repeated but not understood and even some laws of the land do not apply to our urgent need to do things differently, right now.

The opposite of belief is possibility.

What is possible when you consider new ideas and new beliefs? It’s time to learn a healthy disrespect for beliefs, so you can choose which are useful, and expand or release any outdated. Knowing the difference can help you to clear out the old and learn that life is a creative process and old limits do not work well for you in a world as fast moving as ours. Challenge your beliefs, and then find the ones that you want to be true, because your beliefs become your life.


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