Do You Really Value Your Values?

Do You Really Value Your Values? November 7, 2018

As we strive to determine our values, it is important for us to learn how to be honest with ourselves. Our knee-jerk reaction to the topic of values thrusts us to spout out the answers we think we should have, like children in school who have learned how to regurgitate the correct answers on command.

It’s easy to say we value truth or peace or love. But do we? Are these truly our values or are they the masks our true longings hide behind?

 

False Manifestations

One way to determine if your values are truly valuable to you is to test them against truth. We masquerade false harmony as a kind of peace. It is far from it. It’s easy for us to pretend as if quiet and peace are synonymous, but we know deep down they are not.

If we truly value peace, we understand that peace is a mixture of harmony and truth. It is a unity based on reality. When we suspend the facts of reality, the truth of our feelings or rightness itself, it is passivity, not peace, we promote.

For many, this indicates that peace is not really a value. A nagging disruption to unity, whether it is ignored or placated, is an assault on truth.

 

Your Deepest Desire

The question that has to be answered is whether or not peace (or truth, or love, or whatever we are claiming) is actually the value to which we ascribe or if there is something else we are pursuing.

If we do so, we will discover one of two things as a result.

First, we will discover that something else matters more than truth. We like when others tell us the truth, but when are we willing to look past it? The most common answer is when the falsity makes us look good in the eyes of others. Flattery is a value we often desire more than truth itself. We will lie to others, even subconsciously to ourselves, if the end result is our power, our prestige, our like-ability elevated.

The second discovery is the very opposite: that we actually value truth but are afraid of the consequences of pursuing it. It is vital for us to be honest about whether this is the case. Are we so in love with our stated values that we will sacrifice superficial gain to realize them? Things like fear and doubt and the pressure of circumstances can shift us into behavior not in alignment with our values.

We sometimes mimic what is being done all around us because it is easier, safer. The question is whether we do so in a shift away from our core values or if safety and ease, or something similar, is the true value.

 

Values

Either way, we have discovered why we do the things we do. Our stated and realized values may not align. We may want to be better. There is a long road ahead, but it is possible to adopt new values. What we need is to chase truth, including honesty about our current reality, with reckless abandonment.

In doing so, we provide a path for living in abundance, fulfillment, and accordance with the unique vision for our lives.

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  • jekylldoc

    All nicely kept vague and abstract. Hard to disagree with anything here, but either more specificity or more practicality would have made this a lot more valuable. The main exception, that we value flattery even though we don’t like to admit it, is a useful object lesson but it was left up to the reader to apply it. Oh well.

  • billwald

    The concept of “values” has always puzzled me. “I yam what I yam.” If you want an honest opinion of me, ask my wife.

  • The Antagonizer

    White Liberal/Democrat/Progressive Christians: “I value diversity…, psst…, but only up to my front gate.”

  • P. McCoy

    Defending my values: Women on waves.org is the website and info@womenonwaves.org is the email to use about this site from the Netherlands that makes abortion and contraceptives available to Women in countries where both are unduly restricted.

    The United States, with Ohio at the vanguard is one of these countries that are impeding abortion for Women who want it.

    Since Biblical Catholicism at Patheos has banned me for my uncompromising stances for abortion, gay rights and its inaction and scapegoating in relation to its ongoing child and youth sexual predator problems, I am putting this organization out here encouraging its use to begin on Every coastal water or international waters 3 miles or more out beyond the United States.

    Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving.