I don't believe in God, but at the same time I don't feel confident saying with anything approaching certainty that there is no God. I don't think there's sufficient evidence out there to prove he exists, but the evidence he doesn't exist, while it basically encompasses all of science so far... well, it's just that. So far. Did someone flip the switch on the Big Bang? I don't know. No one does. "But God requires faith..." That's the kind of bullshit people tell themselves to justify their worldview. I mean, it doesn't look like God exists, but it didn't look like humans could fly across the Atlantic in a couple hours until very very recently in human history. And now it's so commonplace that we whine about the food on said flights.
So I don't think we should operate on the assumption that God exists - the opposite, for now, seems to be the safer bet. You know, if you're putting money on it. But it's Christmas, and Bieber finding Jesus led to an album that's not just good compared to his own stuff but which is actually kind of great on its own terms, so I find myself wondering if there's something to it.
About a year ago, I visited Utah for work, and I remember my coworker being worried that I was going to make jokes about Mormons... who have some pretty silly beliefs, but who are also awesome entrepreneurs. I know first-hand that going door to door is grueling, so I've got the utmost respect for that hustle. And I found a lot to like there. I don't believe Joseph Smith was a prophet, but I don't think that necessarily means the ideas he brought forward as the word of God were inherently bad, even if they probably weren't the word of God.
Also: weak beer. Drinking 3% beer all day, I know I'm going to be mildly drunk until I fall asleep with zero threat of a hangover. Maybe it's just me, but that's just lovely.
One of my favourite lines from True Detective comes from Season One (as if I had to specify) when Rust says "If the only thing keeping a person decent is the expectation of divine reward, then brother that person is a piece of shit."
That sums up a lot of my opinions on the religious, if not religion. But swap out "divine reward" for "not thinking I'm a jackass in retrospect" and you've actually got a pretty cohesive philosophy. I am far from a perfect person. But something I am compelled to do, or at the very least attempt, is to be a person I'm not embarrassed by in the future. And that carries over to so much of what I'm doing these days.
When I was 20, I thought 18 year old Brian was an idiot. When I was 25, I thought 20 year old Brian was an idiot. And looking back at who I was at 25... that guy was an idiot too. I'm sensing a pattern that I want to break.
Thanks to Shopify, I'm rich. Not wealthy, but rich, and if I don't squander it, I'll stay rich. But not squandering, maximizing my potential, swinging for the fences every day and pushing myself to be the best person that I am... requires a vigilance which is 100% on me. No one else gives a shit. No one else has a reason to notice my daily shortcomings, which I assure you are daily. All I can do is look at my actions through a lens of "Will I think this was stupid in 5 years" and act accordingly.
To bring it back to McConaughey, from his Oscar acceptance speech for Dallas Buyers' Club:
Now when I was 15 years old, I had a very important person in my life come to me and say “who’s your hero?” And I said, “I don’t know, I gotta think about that. Give me a couple of weeks.” I come back two weeks later, this person comes up and says “who’s your hero?” I said, “I thought about it. You know who it is? It’s me in 10 years.” So I turned 25. Ten years later, that same person comes to me and says, “So, are you a hero?” And I was like, “not even close. No, no, no.” She said, “Why?” I said, “Because my hero’s me at 35.” So you see every day, every week, every month and every year of my life, my hero’s always 10 years away. I’m never gonna be my hero. I’m not gonna attain that. I know I’m not, and that’s just fine with me because that keeps me with somebody to keep on chasing.
And I know I'm setting my sights only 5 years out, but I'm impatient. It's one of the things I'm working on. Merry Christmas, folks.