Belief: Deduction or Proposition

September 23, 2023 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

A self that goes on changing is a self that goes on living.” Virginia Woolf

Woolf continues brilliantly…  

Movement and change are the essence of our being; rigidity is death; conformity is death: let us say what comes into our heads, repeat ourselves, contradict ourselves, fling out the wildest nonsense, and follow the most fantastic fancies without caring what the world does or thinks or says.”

Existential Bliss

I am enamored with the idea of Existential Bliss. That we somehow find the deepest of satisfactions within our own core, especially as our core intimately connects with the essence of the Eternal, in whose image we are created.

One way I have accessed this Bliss is by means of pondering what I believe (in the words of author Douglas Adams) about “life, the universe, and everything.” Perhaps, above all other things, what I believe will determine who I am. And so why not give my imagination permission to play a role in what I believe.

After all, Virginia Woolf is so bang on when she suggests that we “… follow [our] most fantastic fantasies without caring what the world does or thinks or says.” In the end, I am the final arbiter of what I intend to believe and do and say.

Permission to Imagine

I am loving giving myself permission to invent and create meaning and truth. After all, I am what I believe. Truly, despite our current love affair with Post Enlightenment propositions of “scientific fact,” most of us nevertheless depend on imagination and mystery as surrogates for truth… or is it… faith?

So. With all this as preamble, here is what I wrote this morning in my journal to me. Bring on mystery and imagination, not as surrogates, but as the very real thing, the most real thing.


It is so true: I live in an interior world of thought and imagination, regularly in the land of mystery and unknowing, understood by both story and theological deductions from the Holy Writ. Little dogma originates from stand-alone biblical proclamations. By that, I mean the great majority of doctrine comes from theological deductions and assumptions contrived from the “Body of Work” we call Scripture.

If my supposition holds any truth, then most of theology is debatable. That is, if theology is based on some sort of truthful writings or recollections of biblical events. Because of the nature of divine interventions (including “miracles”), it is easy, then, to conclude that much of theology is preposterous because it hangs on believing the unbelievable. (NOTE: I wrote more on this a few weeks ago.)

For me, theology holds its highest authority in the realms of mystery and unbelievability. In order for it to be fantastic (and it must be fantastic to be appreciated) one must discover hints of veracity—truths residing in the realms of reason supported by the unreasonable. 

Therefore, one finds oneself left in the throes of mystery and the unknown. Believability on a foundation of the fantastic—a fantastic so attractive that one has no choice but to agree with its magic.  

When Belief is Both

True and Full of Imagination

Photo courtesy of WhataWin at istockphoto

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Next Chapter Podcast
Living a life of meaning Living a life with adventure Living a life with awe