My friend and fellow author, Jamie Mason shared this bit of wisdom with me this week. I got her permission to share it with you. It’s brief, and brilliant. What’s your hurdle for belief?
I just read a frustratingly dumb line in a book in a nonfiction book I’m reading. In the course of doing something else, the people in this book take up the topic of Bigfoot —
“_____ is a believer. Or at least he doesn’t have enough evidence to the contrary so as not to believe.”
This is not how belief works. We believe what we are convinced of.
Now we may be convinced of a thing for good, thorough reasons and demonstrable evidence for it. Or we may believe a thing on slimmer grounds, even down to hunches, gut feelings, and because we want to.
But you don’t believe things because there’s not enough evidence that it *isn’t* so.
Can you imagine how much stupid shit you’d believe if that were the hurdle?
There are reasons to believe in Bigfoot. Are they good reasons? Sufficient reasons? Depending on your threshold, perhaps. But no one believes it — or anything else — because there’s not enough evidence *not* to.
Just, for the sake of a better world, examine your own beliefs and ask of each thing, “What makes me think this is actually true?”