Do You Believe in Magic?

| April 3, 2013 | 6 Comments

Believing in something involves a certain amount of risk. Believing in something is placing your faith in that thing and positioning yourself behind it. Believing in something is jumping, and trusting that there is water at the bottom instead of rocks. There is a certain amount of vulnerability in believing in something. It becomes a part of who you are and how you live your life. People believe in higher powers, ghosts, other worlds, magic, monsters, love, fate, other people, and themselves. Me? I recently realized that I don’t believe in anything. This newfound realization is shaking my world a little as I search for something to clasp onto. I have found nothing and continue to descend without a foothold or a safety net. I am not a believer.

I don’t believe that there is life after death; I don’t believe in fate taking me where I belong; I don’t believe in other people being there for me or being able to understand me. This realization has shaken me because our society is one of believers. From a young age we are fed images and stories of magic, fairytales, true love, and destiny. We believe our parents when they tell us we can be anything we want, our teachers when they state that Christopher Columbus was heroic, and our classmates when they feed us elaborate playground gossip.

Society has made it so that my immediate reaction is to feel as though there is something wrong with me for not believing in anything, as if there is something missing. Each time I recount my disbelief to someone they respond with skepticism and try to find something that I might believe in. Society does not accept the notion of living as a non-believer. While saying that you don’t believe in Santa Claus as an adult is accepted and even expected by society, not believing in love or in yourself is generally seen as fairly outrageous.

Society has programmed us to believe. In a world of believing, where does that leave those of us who don’t? Are we pessimists or maybe just realists? Have we just not found the right thing to believe in or is it simply a characteristic we lack?

Summer Finn is the reason that this is my favorite movie.

It takes a lot to leap into the unknown and trust that there is something there to catch you whether it’s a higher power, a magical fate, or a friend who somehow believes in you. Whatever it takes, it is something that I don’t have and I commend all of you believers—regardless of what you believe in—for taking that risk. However,the things that I don’t believe in make me who I am just as much as the things you believe in do the same for you. I don’t feel as though I’m missing out on anything or as though I need to grab hold of something to believe in. Knowing the literal and living in complete reality is enough to entertain my interests and fulfill my mind. For me, this is the difference between believing and knowing. I don’t believe in love, but I know that two people can make a relationship work. I don’t believe in destiny, but I know that life is a culmination of my successes and my failures. I don’t believe in myself, but I know that if I work hard I can accomplish wonderful things.

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Category: featured, Philosophy and Religion

Mackenzie Morgan

About the Author ()

Even though she's not sure how it happened, Mackenzie is a senior. She is also a cake connoisseur, self-declared hobby architect, and co-Editor-in-Chief of Culture Shock. She hails from a small snow globe of a town deep in the mountains of Colorado and is ridiculously proud of the fact that she's half Australian. She's working towards molding young minds as she studies History Education and American Studies with a minor in Political Science, but she would also like to be a princess (or maybe a lawyer). Her weaknesses and greatest enemies include mornings, ketchup, and mascots. Mostly Mackenzie likes to tweet about sandwiches (@Kenz_LM), eat soup, look at the moon, and work towards being Hermione Granger.

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  1. When I Grow Up… | Culture Shock | September 20, 2013
  1. Sacha says:

    You’re wrong. Society programmes us to see how wonderful magic is and then NOT believe in it. It sends mixed messages, seemingly to make us miserable, but they’ll never stop me from believing.

    How can you live like that? Yes, there’s people, yes, there’s relationships, yes, there’s success, but there’s not /something more/ in your life. Something indescribable. Something beyond all that you can see. What’s the freaking point of your life?

    • Mackenzie Morgan Mackenzie Morgan says:


      As I see it, half the beauty of life is the fact that we all get to experience and perceive it in our own unique way. This blog post is simply a narrative of what I have experienced and my thoughts on those experiences. I don’t believe, as you stated, that I am wrong. I am in no way telling you or anyone else what is or isn’t true. The only thing I’m asserting is true is the way that I, personally, perceive the world for myself. I cannot be wrong in stating my own thoughts.

      As for the point of my life, I have plenty of purpose in my life. I don’t feel the need to subscribe to something beyond all that you can see to give meaning to my life. I live my life in pursuit of adventure, passion, and success. The point of my life is to pursue my passions, spend time with people I want to spend time with, and to enjoy whatever it is I am doing, whether it be friends, career, or hobby. The point of my life is to enjoy it and, for me personally, that does not require a belief in something bigger.

  2. Michael says:

    I only hope that this whole blog is a slightly late April Fool’s joke. How sad and lonely and emply life would be without the notion of believing.

    • Mackenzie Morgan Mackenzie Morgan says:

      Michael, I’m sorry to hear that you think my views are a joke but as I explain in my post, your reaction is not unusual. My life is full of happiness and wonderful people and I wouldn’t describe it as sad or lonely or empty at all. The way I see it, belief is a perspective that defines how you look at life rather than a thing that you either have or do not have. Our perspectives are different, but that in no way means that we cannot both live happy and fulfilled lives by our own personal definitions.

  3. Christian says:

    It would make me so happy if you were inspired by Agora! But jokes aside… read this:

    Ask me about the pen exercise and I’ll show you something cool about reality, perception, and belief.

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