“Without faith a man can do nothing; with it all things are possible.” – Sir William Osler
What is faith?
Faith is confidence or trust in a person, thing, or concept that is not seen, heard or experienced with our five senses. We usually draw upon it when we have nothing left to hold onto, when we’ve reached our final straw and when all possibilities seem impossible. Yet interestingly we use faith daily in small doses without realising it. Faith is embedded in our DNA, it is part of our natural instinctive nature, but we are mostly never aware of it. When we go to sleep we have faith that tomorrow will be a pleasant day. When we find ourselves in unfamiliar settings we use faith to help us on our way. Whether it’s travelling, meeting friends, starting a new job or ending a relationship etc.. there is a part of us that instinctively has faith in the unknown. In the idea that all will turn out well.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)
Faith in the Bible
I am not a Christian but I know that Jesus and the bible continually refers to faith and how the power of faith can not only transform lives but nations. One of the most notable stories is about a shepherd boy who faced and conquered his challenge through the use of faith. Goliath, a 9ft tall giant had been taunting the armies of Israel for 40 days. No one in all of Israel had the will to face him until David, a little shepherd boy made his appearance into the story. After hearing about the boast of Goliath, David was enraged and decided to volunteer for duty. He had so much faith that even when he was directed to put on a suit of armour, he refused.
“Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’, and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you”. (Matthew 17:20)
He told King Saul that, as a shepherd, God had given him victory over lions and bears and that God would now deliver this giant into his hands! Saul was moved by the young boy’s faith and sent him out to face the Philistine. Upon seeing David, Goliath mocked him. But David replied: “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied.” David ran towards the giant with his sling and let a single rock fly! The rest, as they say, is history. David’s faith was unbreakable and the size of his obstacle did not matter.
Let's be honest if we take a dive into the bible and into the life of Jesus, he was running through all obstacles within his path through faith. Whether it was performing miracles, dealing with trials or even his relationship with the Creator. He was using the unseen forces of faith to do what no man dared to. The basis of religion itself is faith. Time and time again the religionists have told struggling humanity to have faith in this and faith in that. It is a powerful tool that once cultivated can create ripples of changes all over the world.
Mahatma Gandhi and faith
“You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty”. - Mahatma Gandhi.
Now let us consider how the power of faith was demonstrated by a man well known to civilisation, Mahatma Gandhi. In this man's actions the world has an astonishing example of the possibilities of faith. Gandhi holds more potential power than any other man and all this without the orthodox tools of battleships, soldiers, materials of warfare and money. He owned very little but what he had was indestructible faith in the attainment of India’s independence and this was achieved through stirring speeches and non-violent protest. He had power, and how did he come by that power?
He created it out of his understanding of the principle of faith, and through his ability to transfer that faith into the minds of two hundred million people. Gandhi has accomplished through the use of faith, what brute force and military power could not and probably will not with military equipment. He has achieved the incredible feat of influencing two hundred million minds to coalesce and move in unison, as a single mind. The closest anyone has come to this, was in the case of Moses who lead the Israelite’s to and through the borders of Egypt. Yet even then there was violence and bloodshed compared to Gandhi’s non violent and peaceful approach.
Gandhi proved that with the power of faith, one man has the power to take on an empire, using both ethics and intelligence. Other peaceful Leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Dalai Lama have used his methods in the years since, shaking up the dynamic of world politics in the process. These are great examples of how using faith to tackle life’s battles whether big or small, can lead to results that would not even be fathomable with the logical mind. You do not have to be religious and it doesn’t matter your age, background or life’s experiences. Faith can be used as a tool to get you through life’s challenges with the knowing and belief, that in the end all will turn out well.
Examples of Faith in real life
“Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies”. - Mother Teresa
If you breathe, eat, walk around and are experiencing life through your five senses in some shape or form, then you are using blind faith. No one knows what’s going to happen a year from now, a month, a week or even tomorrow. Yet it is clear that we all rely on something unseen to get us through our day. Some people do it more consciously than others, yet the fact remains that we all do it and will probably continue to do so until humanity ceases to exist. Every single day you have blind faith that:
The car you are driving at 80kmh doesn't fall apart and explode or another driver doesn't just lose control and smash you into oncoming traffic.
You have blind faith when venturing onto an aircraft and flying , with hopes that you make the journey safely.
You have blind faith that your children will grow up healthy & happy.
You have blind faith that the police officer approaching your way is the “good guy”.
You have blind faith that things will get better.
You have blind faith that you will wake up tomorrow & that the sun will rise up again.
You have blind faith that politicians & religious leaders are looking out for your best interest.
You have blind faith that your donations went to where you think!
You have faith that you will get through that mental or physical illness, and that your life will not turn out as bad as you think.
There are countless occasions within our daily lives where we use blind faith to get us through our day. If you consider yourself to be political or religious without actually researching about the information that is being provided to you, then you are running on blind faith! Regardless of whether you are using the power of faith consciously or subconsciously, remember that it is always important to have faith in yourself! In my next content I will be sharing with you simple and practical ways in which you can use faith to overcome your daily life challenges. Thank you for being here with me, you are loved & appreciated!