Stop the preaching.

What do you believe in? Guess what: I don’t really care. I don’t care what you put faith in, I don’t care about your religion or your spirituality.

I really don’t.

I firmly feel that all of that hulahu is intensely personal. As such, it isn’t for public consumption. Which is why I never talk about my own faiths and belief systems. To anyone. At all.

Oh, I might discuss things using a system, and phrase it and follow it. That’s for a conversation, or action. I will adopt what I need to get things done. If this experience is better suited to being explained by something the Hindu’s said, then I’ll use that. If I need to call on Odin to make sense out of something, then I will do that. Magic, Christ, Quarks – whichever is needed for the job.

But they aren’t what I put my faith in, not deep down in the night when no one is around and I am truly alone and myself. That faith, that core belief? Not your business. Never will be.

As for yours? No I don’t care. But if you tell me about it I reserve the right to:

* Treat it with respect
* Take it at face value
* Challenge it
* Mock it
* Research it
* Ask questions
* Explore it
* Dismiss it

None of the above, keep in mind, mean I hold any responsibility toward discussing my own with you.

See how simple that is? I don’t talk about it. I don’t whisper about it, I don’t even write notes to it in class when no one is looking. Because, for me, I know it is right and simple and pure. I need no outside validation, I don’t need a group to tell me that I’m right with them or a book to lay it out for me. I feel no need to validate it at all. Ever. Because it works for me.

Taadaa.

And until I hear different that’s what I assume about everyone else. Until someone makes the mistake to tell me about their faith I don’t assume I know it. But I have also found that the people who feel the need to shout loudest about their religion are the ones who don’t truly believe it. No, it isn’t an always rule, but it is a rule of thumb.

See, unless you want to convert me, I don’t get why I need to know. If your faith calls for you to act a certain way then I can generally see the effect by seeing how you act.

Presto-bango.

But outside of conversion, why would you feel the need to tell me? What does it get you? What point is there? Do you think it will explain some intrinsic part of you that I need to know?

Most systems are very very similar. At least in how they affect behavior to other people. So saying “Well you need to know that I’m X because that means I try to be nice to people” is a useless sentence. Be nice to people. Why do I need to know? What does it get me to tell me what you feel the root core of that behavior is?

Keep it to yourselves.

The planet would be better off if everyone did.

Published by

Adam P. Knave

Eisner and Harvey award winning editor, writer and tired person. Novelist, comic writer, cat owner, NY'er.

One thought on “Stop the preaching.”

  1. I knew I should have started that religion back in the 70’s when I had a cult following. Wait, I have one of those now. Hmmm!

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