More than once in a debate where I have pointed out the false position of the believer the comeback has been something along the lines of “What have you got to offer??” Meaning I think, what does your path of belief do for me? Although I think this question is irrelevant to the truth of the matter. It is relevant to the value of a belief system. Let me explain.
One of the things a belief system does is it creates a mythos for the society to follow. A pattern to guide their lives. This is very important for a large swath of humanity that desires guidance in what they choose and do. There are lots of us that get quite anxious when things change. We call it being conservative. On the other hand we also have people with a progressive attitude towards change as well. If you dig a little deeper you soon realize that inside each of us these progressive and conservative principles often clash when we are faced with difficult decisions. We each are at some point on this spectrum and even at different points when it comes to different aspects of life. It is little wonder though that even our political parties end up polarizing about this ’embracing change’ or ‘fighting change’ mantra at the core of our very selves.
A belief system has more value to the typical person than just a raw indicator of truth and not truth. This is despite the fact that the belief system often anchors itself as a source of truth to the believer. It has value in that it is a model for desired behavior change. It is also a way to view the world that prevents your fears from debilitating you making you nonproductive and despondent. It often serves as a massive source of confirmation that helps a person feel comfortable with who they are at their core as well. Of course these can be both positive and negative in effect. Belief systems can encourage racism and homophobia, but they can also serve to remind you to love your neighbor and treat others the way you want to be treated. In fact most scriptures at the core of religions have a smorgasbord of ideas to chose from. So many that you can essentially tailor make a set of beliefs that fit you personally (good and bad ones) to the point that you feel like that religion is right for you, almost a perfect fit even. And since we humans are so good at not recognizing these biases we don’t even realize we are completely rejecting some scripture and doctrines outright that we just don’t believe in while hanging our hat on the stuff we like. It seems to fit so well who were are that we assure everyone ours is obviously the true path.
Now as a religion, the Church of the Fridge needs some stuff like this. But we are at a slight disadvantage as we have no claim whatsoever on what is true and what isn’t. In fact there is no enlightenment from the great tall cool one in your kitchen other than that which comes from inside your own head. For thus saith the Fridge. “Although the Fridge doth sustain you with food and drink therein, nothing comes out of the Fridge that wasn’t put in there by you.” It should be no surprise, that is core tenant number one on the path to cool. In that vein I felt inspired to layout 6 rules to being cool. Please enjoy what the Fridge has to offer!
1. Self reliance and responsibility. Finding the path to cool is up to you. Really, it’s all on you. There is no invisible magical being that is gonna help you to count on. But it will feel like there is if you dig deep and simply set aside your fears and try. If you were religious before coming to the light at truth of the Fridge you might already know this feeling. The divine you are looking for is in you. It always has been. If you need to ponder, or pray or meditate or any other other trick of focus to put you in this mindset. Well, do it. Prayer works just as well for a Frigidarian as any other believer! Tap into that divine in much the same way you did before the crisis in faith that brought you here. You will be happy to discover that it still works.
2. Pay it forward. Everyone can use a little help now and then. Although the premier tenant of cool is self reliance, a dose of reality quickly shows that we all have times in our life when we could use a hand. Be ready to offer that hand of fellowship to anyone in need (Fridgidarian or not!) And when you get a hand from someone else use it to get on your feet. And then when you have the chance pay it forward to help another. Properly executed this principle helps all society. There should be movie about it or something. 😉
3. Be kind. Treat others the way you would wish to be treated. It is called the golden rule because is it really that precious, just like gold. It’s not always perfect of course, because we humans are all different, meaning our wishes differ. If you get good at the golden rule, take a shot at the platinum rule. Treat others the way they wish they were treated. This happens when you are sensitive enough to their feelings that you strive to include that in your interactions as well.
4. Be honest and authentic. This tenant on the path to cool often seems to conflict with number 3. Because sometimes brutal honesty hurts. We can’t shy from it though. If it is important we need to be honest about it. This is the same with being authentic. Sometimes we feel we need to change ourselves to be accepted and loved. That leads to self hate, not because change is bad, on the contrary change is often a good thing. But the hate comes when you realize people love you for who you pretend to be not who you really are. That is what you need to avoid. Be yourself, be honest, be friends with people you like and more importantly don’t pretend to be friends with people you don’t. Be authentic.
5. Be cool. Take a deep breath and chill out when things get tough. Because they will get better more often than not. Most worries that eat at your day to day are over either things you can’t really affect or things that will likely resolve themselves. You are better off to spend less time worrying and more time doing something about it, even if the something you do is nothing at all. 🙂
6. Find a purpose. Everyone needs a purpose in life beyond simple survival to feel fully alive. Find yours. Volunteer at a homeless shelter, Race dirtbikes, build your own hand crafted furniture. Something, anything productive and soul serving to you personally. Find what you love and if you can’t make it your career, at least make it a great hobby. Remember thus saith the Fridge “life is meant to be lived, not just believed.”