What is Your Worldview?
We all have our own belief systems. We see the world through our lens of perception, which is based on our belief systems. Our belief system is actual sets of precepts that govern our thoughts, words and actions in our daily life. Our worldview (belief systems) have helped us get through life, and without it, we’re quite handicapped and can’t function very well. I like how Michael Hall explained this:
“As you woke up this morning and moved out into the day, you did so by gathering up a host of beliefs to take with you. You then put them on as spectacles through which to view the world. You have beliefs about yourself…about other people…about work, play, recreation…etc. You have beliefs about the world: politics, education, justice system, other countries, wars…etc. You have beliefs about a thousand different concepts: time, history, the past, the future, personality, destiny etc. Further because you ‘have’ these beliefs, you operate from them as one uses a map to navigate territory. Beliefs are mental maps that govern our life…” ~ Michael Hall.
Recently, my church friends and I were talking on the subject of healing and one of them had a very strong belief on how spiritual healing should work. Out of curiosity I used a series of questions to explore his inner belief, and even challenged him. He was so dogmatic about his view and why it’s ‘the truth’. Before long, he reacted to one of my questions by saying, “It’s the easiest way of looking at it for me…to understand….” There you go! He said it himself: It was his belief system operating, which gave him the most useful way (for him) to view sickness, miracles, healing etc. Nothing wrong with that, but sometimes we’re not aware of the particular lens we’re wearing, and wonder why everyone else doesn’t see what we see.
Self-awareness is always a perfect place to start, for us to recognize the way we’re seeing the world. And realize that what works for you may not work so well for others.
Here are 3 Questions for you to ponder:
1) What worldview lens (belief systems) am I seeing through in my life, work, relationship etc.?
2) How have those lens been helpful/unhelpful?
3) What lens can I discard for a better one?
I want to end this post with a story from Abraham Maslow:
A patient wouldn’t eat because he believed that he was a corpse. After spending much time and energy trying to convince the patient that he wasn’t a corpse, the psychiatrist finally asked him if corpses bled. The patient said he didn’t believe they did, so the psychiatrist asked him to participate in an experiment that involved pricking the patient with a pin. The patient started to bled, and in astonishment said, “Wow! Corpses do bleed after all!”
You may find the story funny like I did. But if we observe our lens of belief systems carefully, we’ll soon realize we’re not very different from that patient sometimes.