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Awol and a Message of Faith

Many years ago I carried stones in a leather bag hung around my neck. A medicine bag as the Indians (native Americans) would have called it. I wanted to believe that each stone had powers of healing or other magical properties. And for a time this worked…

At some point I must have asked myself why I bothered with this (perhaps it was a hot day or something that provoked the thought) but I just upped and stopped carrying them. It also must have been around then that I had the epiphany about what the stones were about and how this applied to my new religious views.

Now I'm assuming most all of you have watched the Disney classic Dumbo . If not, do watch it; you will be glad you did. Also stop reading this post as there are about to be spoilers. But do come back and finish reading after you’ve watched the movie.

Ok, now we have just those who have already seen Dumbo right? Or at least have been warned. Ok. So in the movie the crows convince Dumbo that with his ears so big, that with the help of a magical feather he would be able to fly. And fly he did! It was awesome and got him a great job in the circus, and things were cool for awhile. Well, up until during an act where he falls from the burning building and is supposed to fly up at the last moment. Because on the way down he drops the feather.

OH NO!! What's he gonna do?!

Well, luckily for Dumbo, he had a friend named Timothy Q. Mouse who has been helping him along with his confidence issues. Guess having the huge ears sorta messed him up a bit and then there was the whole thing with his mom having to be caged up after trying to go all crazy when someone was making fun of her son's ears. But back to the fall. The mouse had been hiding in Dumbo's hat and was falling with him. He yells to Dumbo that the feather wasn't really magic. That he had always been able to fly, and to believe in himself.

At the last second Dumbo found that the ability was something that was in him all along and pulls out of the dive safely and flies around the big top.

So, if you're scratching your head about why I had to talk about that after this all started with the talk of the stones I once carried… well, I guess you're not in tune with the spiritual side of yourself. So let me break it down for anyone who might be lost.

The stones were for me the same as Dumbo's feather. There is no real difference. If I believe I can, then I can. Doubt is the greatest drawback. Of course there are laws of physics and such. It’s not like I believe I can will myself to fly. But perhaps that's why I can't. Perhaps we are capable of so much more and no one has bothered to help convince ourselves of this concept.

I would also argue that religion is also a feather. If you do this (whatever ‘this’ is) then your prayer will be answered, right? But with thousands of different religions, how are they all getting their prayers answered? After all I was brought up on the concept that God only honors one faith. So who would belong to a faith that's not paying out? It's a feather… think about that for a moment and you may see that if we believe we can be happy, then we are happy.

Still not convinced? Consider the people who pay hundreds if not more to go to motivational lectures to be told the power is within themselves and walk away a better person. Or the people who have miraculously beaten some medical condition through the power of belief, whether it was religious or otherwise. Also consider why children can learn things like playing the piano faster than an adult can. It's because they lack the years of self-imposed shackles of doubt that prevent us from reaching our true potential.

Of course you wouldn't hear this message of encouragement from a church. I mean, consider their source of income. People pay for their weekly dose of ‘feathers’ or perhaps the consequences of not carrying what they are selling. Nor would many people who profit from selling you things like gemstones, amulets, statues, books, four-leaf clovers, rabbits’ feet, and all the other things that may bring luck, ward off evil or contain some other magical power. After all if you realized that these are all substitutes to the feather and the feather was never really needed… well, they would be out of a job.

Now go out and be awesome and when doubt sets in, hold tight to your feather or at least these words

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