Belief or Pressure?

In order to believe in something or someone, the person has to trust and have faith in it. Beliefs that people have can range from whole life beliefs such as religious beliefs or individual situation beliefs such as trusting someone’s word.

Nowadays people have or at least expect to have free will and control over their behavior and choices. However, do our beliefs have more control over our lives than we think?

It is argued that beliefs can enslave us or liberate us.

Our religious beliefs, cultural beliefs and social beliefs can liberate us by giving us guidance on how we should behave, believe and even think. They help us have something to believe in, and something to look forward to such as heaven, or reincarnation after death, or even living heaven on earth simply by believing in ourselves and achieving our dreams one day.

On the other hand, however, are these beliefs really liberating or are they keeping us from doing what we really want to do in life? Throughout our whole lives, we are taught to believe certain things, certain guidelines whether it be religious, cultural, or social. If we don’t abide by these rules, we can easily become outcasts. For example, if we don’t have any religious beliefs but our community does, we could face social pressure and be forced to believe in something we don’t, just for the sake of inclusion.

So, is this liberation or enslavement?

In my opinion, although we may need some guidance to an extent, such as children need rules and borders to guide them, people need to have the freedom of choice without the pressure given through society.  For example, why do some communities believe that men are superior to women, or women are superior to men? Why do people believe that students should go on to tertiary education straight after high school is over? I believe that if people did not have pressures such as “You have to become a doctor.” or “You must be an engineer”, then people will truly be liberated.

However, family and social beliefs regarding inhibit people from truly liberating. Instead of following the beliefs of the community, people should follow their own beliefs and bring their own liberation to life. This way the world would have communities of happier people simply because they do what actually makes them happy. I believe actual liberation is this.

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