The Damage Of Doctrine

In an effort to quench the endless thirst I have for learning, I listen to a lot of podcasts, talk to other coaches and read non-fiction books about life as much as I can. There are certain things I can just get onboard with (Oprah seems to find the spot) and certain things that I just can’t get behind. I have wondered what it is that I just can’t live with. It’s doctrine. And I’ll tell you why.

Doctrine is defined as “a belief or set of beliefs held and taught by a Church, political party, or other group.” The thing that bothers me about it is that certain people live with the conviction that their beliefs are the right ones and that there are no other ways around it. Meaning, they believe their doctrine is the only correct one. The reason this is damaging is that it does not allow flexibility and individuality. There is only one size and it fits all. If there is one thing I am sure of it is that no one person is the same. No one has been through the same history as anyone else. No one has living through the same things in the same way. While we may be able to relate to one another, it does not mean that the way we felt or the way we perceived the world is exactly the same. While beautiful in some way, it also makes us feel very isolated and like we do not have anything in common with others. Hence why we strive for community and belonging and lean towards groups that tell us what we should feel, think or believe.

The thing is, since we are so unique, it is not possible to belong 100% to a group without giving up a part of you. Without feeling like we need to fit a mold and thus, are wrong if we cannot fit perfectly. We blame ourselves and turn to self hatred for not being a certain type of person. The many times I tell people that it’s ok to feel how they feel, or that it is ok to not enjoy jogging, or not be able to touch their toes in yoga, or not enjoy going on vacation is honestly, would blow your mind. Doctrine to me, is the opposite of self acceptance. It limits people into living their own authentic truths and thus living the life that suits them best. It opens a life without blame.

We humans, we are too big to fit into a mold. And that is the beauty of us. Don’t let doctrine damage your individuality. Being an individual does not mean you are alone. It just means you can accept other peoples individualism as much as your own. That you find comfort in yourself in not being like others.

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