I had a conversation with a friend a little while ago about the social effects religion sometimes has on a person. She had described a type of religious person that I’m sure many of us have interacted with, or at least understand.
The type that goes to church out of fear of punishment or as a feeling of need to represent it’s moral. Attending church often and identifying with its teachings yet not practicing them in full and usually acting in a manner that’s nearly the opposite of those teachings when in the outside world. A person who uses their participation in a religion and active visiting of a church, to act as a leverage for themselves to justify placing harsh judgment over others – especially to those who do not ascribe to a complimentary belief system.
Though I could see where she was coming from, the manner in which she emotionally associated to this type of person – frustration and agitation – seemed self-defeating. I fully agreed with her that those types of people have a history of existence and they’re pretty difficult to deal with, but when I asked her about how many people she knew in her life that acted this way; people who she interacted with face to face, she couldn’t really think of any.
“It’s interesting how we can put so much frantic energy towards a type of person that doesn’t even exist in our physical reality, ” I said to her. “The stereotype of religious person you described definitely exists, I mean, every culture has ignorant people but putting so much energy towards it as an idea alone seems a bit unnecessary. It’s like giving energy to the ghost in the machine”
We began to speak of archetypes and a place within the human mind where patterns of behavior exist as a potential and how we express those potential patterns through our thoughts, feelings, and actions. How consciously or not, our focus or belief energizes specific patterns to shine out in the world. When we allow ourselves to become frustrated, agitated, saddened, fearful etc. of a pattern or archetype that we don’t actually have present in our lives, we increase its likelihood to shine out in our world – somehow, somewhere. So it’s important to be aware of our ability to create a life to these archetypes because the last thing we need is more ignorant people.
You don’ have to waste your energy on things that don’t exist in your reality. Place that energy into supporting the constructive people in your lives, instead of stressing over the potential for destructive people who might exist somewhere else.