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People With Strong Faith Doubt Everything

Well, maybe not everything. (Although I remember a period when I questioned my own existence and wondered if all of “reality” was in fact some giant’s dream that would go “poof” when he awakened.) Let’s not go down that trail.

People of great faith almost always have deep doubts. St. Theresa of Calcutta and St. John of the Cross are good examples. Does God exist? Is God good? Who am I? Does my life have meaning? How do I know if all that stuff I was taught is true?

Doubt is not the opposite of faith.

You can’t really have faith if you have no doubts.

When we doubt, we do not doubt what is essential, fundamental, eternally true. We doubt our perceptions, our ideas, and our opinions of what is essential, fundamental and true. You do not really doubt God. You doubt your view of God.

A client told me she did not believe in God. I asked her to describe the god she did not believe in. I don’t believe in that god either. She described a mean, demanding, oppressive super-being.

Deconstruction is the process of doubting, questioning our perceptions, the ideas and opinions handed down to us by our parents, faith communities, and cultures. It’s healthy to ask why we believe what we believe. What are our essential values? Why?

But if all we do is deconstruct, we wind up sitting in a heap of rubble.

We also need to build and construct a fresh worldview, a fresh set of internalized values. We need a worldview that is more closely connected with Ultimate Reality.

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