So my dad told me a long time ago that whenever life got overwhelming for him, he would go out to the shore and watch the sun set. He probably fished too, he loved to fish. But he said that it gave him a sense of “everything is right with the world” knowing that no matter what bullshit is going on in his life — or anyone else’s for that matter — the Earth kept turning on and on. He told me that watching the sun slip below the horizon gave him a “promise of tomorrow” and whenever he could watch the sun set, it calmed him and he could go on with his life in a mild-mannered way. Which was good, because my dad had anger issues that often got him in a lot of trouble. Ha!
The daily prompt is a repeat which I’ve answered before (you can read my previous answer here.) The prompt itself asks us: What’s your reason to believe? citing Bruce Springsteen’s song of the same name (Reason to Believe) and quoting this line: “At the end of every hard-earned day / people find some reason to believe.” This time I looked up the lyrics of the song which talks about a whole bunch of very sad things, all of which the narrator finds to be “funny”. Nice. But, as the song goes, people find a reason to believe. I think it’s stupid song. People don’t find a reason to “believe” they find a reason to “go on.” Even hard-core Christians doubt their god now and again. Speaking from experience here, one doesn’t even have to be facing hardships to let doubt creep in. That’s a common fallacy, someone can be perfectly happy with their lives and the world around them and still question their faith. I think it’s a stupid prompt too. No one needs a “reason” to believe. They either believe, or they don’t. That’s like asking someone, “Why do you love me?” You either love someone or you don’t love someone. You don’t wake up one morning and say, “You know what, that person over there has all of these enduring qualities, I think I’ll fall in love with them.” It doesn’t work that way. I’ve known some really great people who’ve loved some terrific assholes. Ask them why and they’ll say, “I just do.” Believing is the same thing. They just do.
I love the analogy in the movie Dogma when describing faith:
Liz: He said that faith is like a glass of water. When you’re young, the glass is small, and it’s easy to fill up. But the older you get, the bigger the glass gets, and the same amount of liquid doesn’t fill it anymore. Periodically, the glass has to be refilled.
I’ve always found that to be true about pretty much everything in life. Our reservoirs for everything get bigger as we grow so we need more to fill them up. It’s why children can watch the same movies or television shows over and over again and find delight in them, but we want to run screaming from the room. We need more to fill our entertainment cups up. But periodically, all of our cups need to be refilled, or the cup runs dry.
Anyway, back to the prompt. At the end of the day, I don’t need a reason to believe. Like my dad, I just need to get through this day and have, not a promise, but a hope that tomorrow will be there when I wake up. I never said this to my dad because it would have been rude of me, and I didn’t want to intrude on his ritual, but I don’t think that watching the sun set gives anyone a promise of anything. I mean, nothing can promise tomorrow. There’s nothing that promises me the next five minutes if you think about it. If anything, watching the sun set simply says, “Good job, you made it through today.” and really, that’s the best one can do. But that was my dad’s way of getting through his rough times and I’m glad he had that. He needed it sometimes. I’m sure he still does, but to tell y’all the truth, no one in the family knows where he is or if he’s still alive. We have issues in our family. ^_^ I don’t have a ritual like my dad. I pretty much go on faith that the world will keep on turning, with or without me. I’d like to be here to see tomorrow, but I know that even if I am not, the world will go on. I know it’s weird, but that gives me a strange sort of comfort.