Do you believe whatever falls into your head? Are you biased towards a particular viewpoint and don’t do anything to challenge those beliefs but only do everything in your power to confirm them? Even if it means distorting reality to fit your interpretation of truth? It’s so easy in this day and age to find exactly what it is you want to know. The only problem with that is that people aren’t trying to learn anything new anymore. All they want is confirmation that their truth is the only truth worth knowing. And that’s dangerous because it closes our minds to receiving any helpful information that would benefit our minds.
I believe what we fill our heads with is so important. We’re going to be spending all of our days receiving some kind of information. Advertisements, news stories, opinions, radio waves, Social media – all of these hover in the background of our day-to-day lives and most of the time are front and center and take our full attention. What we dedicate ourselves to is what we will eventually become. The Bible calls it becoming a slave to our master. And that master can be anything we give power over us. And that’s what we’re doing anytime we take anything into ourselves – we’re giving away some of our power and allowing what we’re intaking to gain some power over us.
The problem with Christianity is who we’re giving our power to. The less of ourselves we give to God the more open we are to being manipulated and controlled by others. These can be friends trying to get us to lay down our convictions, pastors with a particular spin on Gospel, and politicians who spend their entire careers pushing agendas. This is why it’s important to know the people we let into our lives. Because what they believe in will eventually influence what we believe in. Whether we agree with their viewpoints or not will depend greatly on how much we’re trying to take in from all sides of an argument. We should be receptive to any and all information that’s available and not limit ourselves beyond our own biases.
Now, I will address my own particular biases because it’s likely something that can be brought up against me: you’re preaching about being open-minded but likely have your own head full of what you believe in. And this is true: my head is full of my own beliefs that might not line up or match anyone else’s. But I have spent a lot of time learning all there is to know about what I believe in – even the other side’s point of view. That way when challenged by my beliefs I know the arguments for and against what I believe in and can therefore be open to learning even more. I have a Christian bias – obviously. The things that I see are going to be seen through the eyes of someone who regularly spends time reading the Bible, watching and listening to sermons, and going to Church. I have spent my whole life learning why the Bible is something I can agree with and stand by but I also know why someone can choose to think that our beliefs are ridiculous. Mostly because of how its followers behave. We’re the biggest evidence for or against Christianity and we seem to be doing the best we can to prove that it’s phoney, not worth anyone’s time, and is a pointless endeavor to pursue. Our modern version of Christianity has undone everything the early Church tried to build. The things that people died for then and are dying for today are mocked and taken for granted because we ourselves provide little to no substance to what Christianity stands for. We’ve torn down the house of brick and built one up made of straw. And the reason why is because our biases. We’re giving them too much power when we should be the ones in control.
Let personally held beliefs be the beginning of knowledge and wisdom for you. Allow it to be a jumping-off point to more information. Biases are only good if you allow them to open doors to more insight and understanding. Biases shouldn’t be used to close off any information. It’s only through understanding each point of view that you can achieve any kind of convictions. Don’t waste any moment or opportunity to connect with others, especially those who don’t see the world the way you do. That’s the only way our reality grows to encompass all aspects of life instead of the limited viewpoint that only we ourselves know.