dr. joe capista on: concepts of god

okay, this is the third and last instalment of my review of dr. joe capista’s book what can a dentist teach you about business, life and success?. we’re looking at dr. capista’s reflections on spirituality. so far, we’ve learned about being committed to going on retreats, and studying sacred text together with others. today, ideas about belief.

i have had people ask me if i am 100% certain about my concept of god and spirituality. actually, it doesn’t matter if what i believe is true or not. i say this because if i died tonight and i get to wherever i’m going only to find there is no heaven and no god, i would be satisfied. i’d look back on my life and say, “i’m glad i did it that way, because i was a happier person. i lived my life based on principles that made me happy and made others happy.”

so i don’t live or think this way to reap the benefits of heaven. i live this way and believe this way because it gives me a quality of life that is truly passionate, joyful and loving.

i know life is fragile; it could fall apart tomorrow, but i’d still have my sense of self and the knowledge to recreate and rebalance this gift we call “life.”

holding paradoxes in one’s mind is one of the delights – and consternations – of a life lived in open-eyed spirituality. the paradox here, the seeming contradiction, is about believing in something that we are not 100% certain is “true”. how can you not only believe but also base so much of your life on something that is intangible and maybe not even “there”?

see how i put the words “true” and “there” in quotation marks?

the crazy thing is that belief, truth and certainty are completely abstract. they’re just words.

what counts, and what delights our hearts, is to live all of this stuff. to live prayer. to live joy. and when it looks like none of it makes sense to simply throw up our hands and grin. because it feels right.

3 thoughts on “dr. joe capista on: concepts of god

  1. Evan

    If I understand what Joe is saying it’s: it’s about experience not belief.

    I think most of our lives are founded on intangibles. Where do I kick my toes against ‘experience’, ‘multiplication’ or ‘value’ or . . . the list is practically endless.

    Evan’s last blog post..Mind and Body in Fatigue and Cancer

  2. isabella mori

    that seems to be the theme here lately, no? it’s all about action and experience. i am reminded of genkaku, a buddhist writer, saying that beliefs are like training wheels. they can help you get going in the beginning but once you got the hang of it, they will just hinder you.

    ah, but if it was only that. you said it – much of our lives are founded on intangibles. we are immensely mental creatures.

    balancing our mind, ideas, body and experiences if one of the great challenges of being human …

  3. ReddyK - The Atma Jyoti Blog


    I haven’t been by in a while, so I wanted to say hello.

    Belief is only a stepping stone. The important thing is to find out by experience what is true. And that takes a constantly enquiring mind.

    An interesting translation of one of Jesus’ sayings I came across is “Keep on asking, Keep on seeking, Keep on knocking, and it shall be opened to you. The Keep on element is important.

    ReddyK – The Atma Jyoti Blog’s last blog post..The Unseen Seer, Unheard Hearer, Unthought Thinker, Unknown Knower

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