Storytellers

“My parents are Christian. They were always telling me stories as to why God was omnipresent, and omniscient, and omnibenevolent. Our teachers at school would try desperately to cover all the holes. They’d be unable to answer contradictions and inconsistencies, but for some reason they held on to their beliefs. My whole life I’ve been trying to not be like them. I took joy in finding flaws in other people’s beliefs. Because it’s always easier to find the flaw in a system then to amend it. But now I’m getting older, and I’m kind of looking for a belief system. It seems like a starting point. A psychological anchor of sorts. Yesterday one of my teachers told a story about how his cat died, and he buried it in the backyard, but wild dogs dug it up. He was devastated. But his wife quoted him an ancient Buddhist principle — it’s very short, only four Chinese characters—and it calmed him. That’s the power of a belief system. The ability to be comforted by a single sentence.”

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