Belief: Is John Mayer right, is fighting for belief “wrong”?

by gradycarter

As I was listening to this song by John Mayer “Belief” and I decided to think really hard about the lyrics. They are as follows:
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Is there anyone who
Ever remembers changing their mind from
The paint on a sign?
Is there anyone who really recalls
Ever breaking rank at all
For something someone yelled real loud one time

Everyone believes
In how they think it ought to be
Everyone believes
And they’re not going easily

Belief is a beautiful armor
But makes for the heaviest sword
Like punching under water
You never can hit who you’re trying for

Some need the exhibition
And some have to know they tried
It’s the chemical weapon
For the war that’s raging on inside

Everyone believes
From emptiness to everything
Everyone believes
And no one’s going quietly

We’re never gonna win the world
We’re never gonna stop the war
We’re never gonna beat this
If belief is what we’re fighting for

What puts a hundred thousand children in the sand
Belief can
Belief can
What puts the folded flag inside his mother’s hand
Belief can
Belief can

As a Christian I initially felt a little bit defensive about what he was saying, but then I realized that whether he was coming from an angle of actual belief or disbelief, and regardless of his motives I think that he has a rather amazing point to be made.

Having been a part of several evangelical things in my life, and enjoying them for the most part, and finding some very serious feelings of worth and purpose in a few of them I can say that I have come to believe that we need to simplify. Talking about Christianity (or pretty much any other creed for that matter, but for my own personal purposes I will discuss Christianity) it is absolutely vital/crucial that LOVE is the first and foremost of all emotions and that our actions are seeping with the remnants of a loving disposition. That can be found throughout the bible, and Jesus said that it was of the most central importance above all other things to first love the Lord, and then next to love your neighbor as yourself. I am not trying to put this all too much into a box that would indicate that I know all of the secrets of the world, but I am stating that this is what That Bible says, and I think that it is very crucial that Christians pay attention.

With this in mind about love I think that we must consider what it might mean to love our neighbor as our self… Does that count if they’re muslims, or if they’re atheists for crying out loud?!!..!!!?!….. Absolutely… Scripture actually calls us all to love our enemies… I realize that a lot of people don’t like scripture, and if that is the case feel free to ignore that, but I think that you will be missing out on a wonderful opportunity to watch people try and fail, which would just allow for a greater need for graciousness from others as well as an all powerful creator.

Oh, and another thing that I find very important to note about Jesus, and Christianity was the fact that Jesus would perform miracles and bless people’s lives and he would always ask them not to tell other people who did it… They pretty much all did tell, as I probably would have, but the point is that he was not necessarily as bent on the message all of the time as he was about spreading his example; just as Paul would later claim that he wasn’t always right, but that he often was and that Christians should follow his example. The message is very important, but it quickly loses it’s importance if people think that they are about to change the world with a hateful attitude, and if they are actually willing to kill and maim in the name of Jesus, who would have to some extent suggested turning the other cheek…

It might seem like I am getting off track, but my intention is to help create an understanding of the importance of accepting one another for who we are, and who we would like to be. And when I use the word accept I don’t just mean manage not to kill one another, but I actually mean love and accept…

I think that Mr. Mayer is really on to something… I don’t think that it is wrong to feel passionate about the things that you believe, but remember to believe is not the same as to know… For some that might sound like a fight starter, and I’m not trying to question anyone’s faith, but we must all realize that we must be firm in what is provable, and understanding if some people struggle to understand why we might believe something that we can’t absolutely prove beyond a shadow of a doubt. Once we begin to sympathize with those who might not yet understand what we Believe we might then learn to empathize, and show them the kind of grace/love that should be practiced by virtually all religions/ideologies.

I’m sorry that I keep talking about religion, but it really bothers me to watch people actually searching for the truth neglecting to recognize that there is very little truth that they can absolutely declared. The closest I’ve come on a personal level of being convinced that I have known an absolute truth was the emotion of Love, and I don’t mean a lustfully plagued love, but an accepting and caring love.

I must admit that I don’t know everything, and that I might be making people mad for no good reason, because I could absolutely be wrong about most or all of the stuff that I’m saying, but I’m putting it out there so that I might be given a chance to learn more. So, please feel free to share your thoughts with me.

Okay, it’s bedtime, but feel free to tell me your thoughts if you think this was or was not worth your time.

Thanks,

Grady