Do Our Beliefs Say Who We Are?

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Have you ever gone to one of your friend’s house for dinner? You’re gathered around the table with their family, glazing at the delicious food they prepared and right before you dig in you notice they all bow their heads and pray. Later you ask your friend why they pray before dinner.  Your friend says that’s the way it is; it has always been that way. We all have to take a moment and ask ourselves, Are our beliefs truly ours or is it something we borrow or accept from what someone tells us? For years, Dr. Paul Sago has tried to make sense of this concept and in his quest he invites us to think honestly about our religious beliefs. What do we believe in and why do we believe?

It is natural to be curious about life and often wonder about religion. When we ask questions about it we’re told it’s already written, believe it and ask no questions because we say so. “I need to know when, what and why,” said Dr. Sago. “I feel it necessary to investigate every possible avenue leading to a final opinion.” Paul Sago served fifty-two years under the broad of organized religion. He was a pastor of four churches, vice-president for three church-related colleges and president of two universities. In his book, Holy Hodgepodge: Have You Thought about Your Religion Lately? Sago examines several key concepts of various religions with a critical eye. Through a unique blend of personal and theological reflection, he provides a refreshing view of God and religion. “This was to have people think,” replied Dr.Sago. “It wasn’t to change anybody’s mind about anything. It was just simply to have people think about what they say they believe.”

Holy Hodgepodge is distinctive in its standpoint and thought provoking in its content, encouraging readers to think for themselves with each chapter an eye-opening experience. If you ever wondered why, how or if our lives relate to this world or question the hows and whys of organized religion then read this book. “I hope that it gives an opportunity to see God in a different light,” said Sago. “And to know that you don’t have to necessarily belong to a church to be spiritual. I think the younger generation of college-age students are very thoughtful and I think they’re very confused over things and stuff being very important to them; they’re living in a world that’s confusing.” With as much curiosity we have about religion, it’s not easy to express those particular thoughts to our families and especially if they’re churchgoers. “I’m sad that young people find it difficult to have conversations these days,” responded Sago.”Because they’re always working with computers and they’re not talking enough intelligently from one person to another. It’s a difficult world we’re creating.  By saying if you’re thinking your doubting and doubting is sin. They actually work to keep people from thinking seriously by using guilt.”

No matter what church we go to, what denomination we are or what section of the world we’re from, it is important to truly know why you believe in order for us to understand who we are. It is through the expression of those beliefs that we discover our purpose in life. With Holy week and Passover approaching, millions of believers will be faced with the task of either affirm or re-affirm what we believe before we get lost again in this hectic hustle called life. “Logical belief is a powerful force,” added Dr. Sago. “To believe is critical to being. To know what we believe and to have our beliefs be our own, and at the same time, to love and cooperate with others who may worship differently, brings peace and comfort that is only equaled by appreciation and praise.”

 

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Do Our Beliefs Say Who We Are?