OK, so I'm touching on a subject that is generally a 'no-no' in most conversations. Yes, both religion and politics are very controversial topics, with many strong opinions and emotional perspectives; so it is usually better to stay away from these issues if you don’t want to start an argument.
Importantly though, religion can be a powerful source of inspiration and happiness for many people – especially during difficult times. So to be complete in my mission to help people be happier - and to make the most meaningful contribution possible - I must address it – at least superficially.
Religion is not for everyone – obviously. In fact, I am not a "religious" person (to get to know me a bit more, see About Jimmy for a brief biography). I was baptized Catholic, yes, but I have not followed the path of "religion". Until a couple of years ago, I had not even been to church in long time. It's just not been my thing.
I am, however, very spiritual. When I see a beautiful sunset or the smile on my little daughter's face, or hear the beautiful sounds of some great jazz music - I feel deeply that there is a higher force guiding us.
A few years ago my wife convinced me to start going to church – mainly so that our baby daughter could be brought up with the experience – so someday, she could make her own choice as to how religion would – or would not – fit in her life.
So we found a church in Southern California that I really like a lot called Mariner's Church (if you’re in the Southern California area you can check it out at www.marinerschurch.org). We go once or twice a month when we're in Newport Beach – and I’ve started to really look forward to going for several reasons:
The experience provides comfort, education, entertainment and a sense of togetherness that is pleasurable, spiritual, and even fun.
For most people who participate regularly in a religious practice, the experience of going to a regular worship service also provides a significant connection to their creator – which is the primary reason they go in the first place.
So, because of all these attributes, it’s a very good setup (a “system” if you will) for helping us to deal with adversity. It provides many – if not most – of the criteria we need to best handle our problems. If nothing else, it can prevent you from going through tough times alone by surrounding you with a support system of people who understand and care. At the other end of the spectrum, it can get you closer to your creator – if that’s what you need and believe – to help guide you through the best path. And then there is everything in between – like the spiritual, entertaining, educational, inspirational, and motivating qualities I get from the experience.
I’ll talk more specifically about religion in other articles. The goal of this first article is just to present the idea as a means to dealing with adversity through connection and spirituality.
And so even if you are not a "religious" person and if you have not tried this strategy to help you deal with adversity in your life – especially in times like these when financial stress is extremely high – you might want to consider giving it a try. It can’t hurt...
BeHappy! my friends
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