April 14, 2013
Should one be able to question their faith? Do you yourself ever question your faith, or do you follow every day without one question? How do we know how strong and stable our faith is if we can’t even question it to see if it breaks down or holds together?
There are many people in the modern world following a faith just because it’s what they are used to because it’s the faith that their parents or family have instilled in them throughout their life. I’m not saying this is a bad thing but wouldn’t you want to be able to defend your faith without a doubt because you yourself have questioned it and it still held out? There are people who are too afraid to ask questions about their faith for fear of what others would think of them and/or what their religious leaders may do to them, such as excommunication. The most obvious thought is that one should want to know as much as possible about their relationship and the reasoning behind it so they feel even more like what they believe in is true and wont falter under the harshest inquisition.
This isn’t meant to point out a specific group for “doing what they are told” or never “thinking outside the box.” This is just in hopes of bringing to light the idea of questioning religion for those who aren’t sure if it is okay to do so. Think about it, what’s the worst that could happen? Religion should be about what you believe in and about what makes the most sense to you, not what everyone else wants you to believe in. So why not explore it more?
In a relationship with a significant other, many times people will question the other person about negative things they have heard or even if they are doubting something within their relationship. There is no controversy over doubting your relationship with a loved one and sometimes it is even looked at as healthy. So, why should you not be able to do this in your own faith? Just as the relationship, when the faith comes out still on top even after questioning, then the relationship with your faith holds even stronger than ever before. Sometimes, people even feel closer to their faith when they can question it because it didn’t quiver to doubt.
“You gotta stand for something or you’ll fall for anything,” these are the lyrics to a song by the pop band The Script. These lyrics rein so true in all things and especially when talking about faith. When you believe in something and don’t know why you believe in it, then how do you know that what you believe in is worthwhile? How do you know that you are not wasting your time on a lie or something that has no substantial ground to it? If you don’t feel as you should question it, then you may indeed, be the person who, “falls for anything.”
When a person feels comfortable and able to fully explore their religion and be able to ask questions, they typically feel as though their faith rings out on top. By being reaffirmed that your own religion holds out against all doubt, most people feel more close to their faith and show it more in their day-to-day lives. They feel more proud of their religion because they know why they do what they do and feel as though they can further question it if need be. This idea is the same as in other things in life; if you are affirmed in it then you will feel more comfortable and can rely on it more easily.
There are some decently-good reasons for someone to worry about questioning their religion, like what their religious leaders might think or do. Some leaders are very extreme in their beliefs and think that the religion should be believed without a doubt. There are other sects of religion too that allow people to explore the religion as a whole and the people in return get more out of the religion because they feel closer to it.
In the long run, most people who are able to question their faith and delve into the reasoning behind the things they do in their religion feel closer to their faith. When someone doesn’t question their faith then how do they know that they aren’t just falling for anything? To question a faith doesn’t mean you are doubting it and hope to find out it is in the wrong, on the contrary questioning just reassures a person’s beliefs and makes it almost easier to believe in their faith.
Meagan Card, Anna