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I was brought up to never discuss three things in mixed or public company: Politics, religion or money. This simple lesson has served me well and helped me navigate different social and career settings over the years.
As I age, I do find myself occasionally involved in any of these three topics in conversation with close friends, though always steering shy of such matters in public, on social media, at work or with other men that I do not count close friends.
While I seldom agree on many different issues discussed with other peers, my groups being rather diverse both in ethnicity, world view, finance, upbringing/education and class, I certainly learn much from the vibrant discussion of such matter with other men I respect.
That preface being said, what say you all on matters pertaining to faith, its existence, pursuit and practice?
I personally was raised in a home of faith, involved in several institutions that embraced the concept (both large organized groups as well as private education) but still left to my own devices when it came to belief, pursuit and practice, if any. My parents raised me to read all things, challenge all things, trust no thing till proven. My Dad often reminded me that the only reason I was in those schools was for the quality of education, not the religious indoctrination. The places of worship I attended in youth varied due to geography of school, social peer groups and different programs and activities offered.
A large portion of my adult life was lived then in a space where faith, its groups, ideas, traditions and practices had little space or impact in my daily or even annual life. It had not made the journey with me from young adulthood to manhood, and I seemed no worse the wear for the absence of its activities and schedule. I had gleaned many ethical concepts and moral precepts from my time spent with well meaning people, but learned to implement the things that I found as universal truth into my life as a man, without the dogma or baggage some might associate with such precepts.
Now, on the cusp of middle age, I find myself seeking and pursuing a "something" more than the success I have found in my physical and material pursuits. Some is the calling to me that I find in my time in the natural world while other pangs seem to emanate from music that I pursue and practice and even other callings seem to stem from my own interaction with the situations, individuals and life experiences that I am immersed in currently, as well as experienced in the passing of years.
What say you all?
Does faith have a place in your life in some manner?
If so, how so?
If not, why not?
I hope to hear some words from others with more life experience than I, who might be the wiser for it, to glean some understandings about this movement I feel in myself now, that doesn't seem to spring from any person, place, thing or idea. No group or message has triggered this difference, but more, a growing or changing transition I find within myself, in those quiet times where I can hear myself think and live. It is most keen before dawn and at sunset, though that may only be a coincidence of the alone time I find for myself.
Any words are appreciated. Any thoughts shared considered. Pro/con/indifferent are all welcome here.