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Beliefs Are Bogus

creativity stoicism Nov 21, 2017

The Case for Values

It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows." - Epictetus

We are driven by our beliefs. We live by them and die for them. And far too often we cleave to them in the face of evidence that they are not absolutes or even true. We believe that our beliefs define who we are and seek out those who believe what we believe and turn up our nose at, or even rail against, those who do not. But here's the thing...,

beliefs are bogus.

Not always, of course, but far more often than we care to admit. Sadly, these bogus beliefs are usually the ones we cling to most desperately. And this dynamic is doing immense harm to our physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. It's destroying our relationships and, indeed, the planet on which we live.

What to do? It's time we seek out what really defines us. Our values speak to who we truly are. 

What's the Difference?

Beliefs are nothing more than opinion or conviction. An internal feeling that something is true without proof and without making it susceptible to scrutiny. To quote Shakespeare's Hamlet, "Thinking [simply] makes it so." 

Values are guiding principles that speak to what we deem worthy or important in life. We can hide in or behind our beliefs if we choose, but our values truly reflect who we really.

It's Time to Stop Hiding

The time and effort we waste rationalizing and justifying beliefs, especially false beliefs stunts our ability to develop our potential in areas that really matter.

Dialing in our values allows us to develop excellence of character and connect with others at a far deeper level. Our values drive our beliefs. If we get our values straight, then we are much more likely to develop healthier beliefs. Healthier beliefs help us adopt more positive attitudes (which is how beliefs are expressed), and this all leads to more beneficial emotions.

 

 
 

About the Writer


Scott Perry is the author of The Stoic Creative Handbook. Now available on Amazon or, read the free chapters at TheStoicCreative.com.

 
 
 

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