Sei sulla pagina 1di 1
ing Spirituality There are many facets of a positive attitude, one of which, for many, includes a personal belicf and understanding of a bigger picture, of a world much larger than the individual. This can be an understanding of a creator, anda belief of life thatcontinues beyond this dimension. There are many religions out there that claim to have all the answers, if only one follows theirrules. Personally, I was raised as a traditional Southern Baptist, where you were taught to read and believe what best suits you. Souther Baptists have certainly lost that image, but that original theology ‘has stuck with me. ‘The important aspect, to me, is the belief in an afterlife, and whatit takes to getthere, Ihave taken from the Bible, the Ten Commandments and the Sermon ‘on the Mount, and disgarded the rest as irrelevant to my life. I believe if you strive to be good, and succeed much of the time, you have nothing to worry about. My strong belief I will continue after this body dies has greatly diminished any fear of death. ‘Whenthere’s little fearofdeath, there's much less of a burden when dealing with poL oa /Td all the pressures of HIV infection. When ‘you know that you will survive this body, taking hysterical steps to preserve this body becomes less likely. T've known a couple athiests who have done quite well with their HIV infection, but couldn't do that. Religious fundamentalists would call me blasphemous and bound for hell, but I know better. The God in which I believe is a loving and forgiving God, and he is happy with my efforts to be good. But for you, what I believe or what the fundamentalists believe is not important. You should believe in whatever makes the most sense, and in which you feel most comfortable. There are many, many non- Christians out there who draw much strength from their spiritual beliefs. choices. | living with HIV. Self-Empowerment Self-empowerment is the act of taking control of our lives. This can be evidenced by such behaviors as: «Self-education through identifying and utilizing available resources and information. Gaining self-knowledge/acceptance/understanding to enable us to make life enhancing There is Buddhism, Judaism, Shintoism, Hinduism, and many other religions that have teaching from which to draw strength and understanding. There are also many philosophies outside of religions, that can give one understanding. So, if one is disturbed and/or confused by life’s tums, there is much out there which tries to explain, Sometimes, prayer or meditation can bring further answers. One can pick one religion or philosophy and stick with it, or one can do as I did, and develop a religion all one’s own. ‘As with everything, the search requires some effort, but the rewards can be so great. One can find peace and raise awareness, so that the struggle to survive becomes much less ofa burden. fea) Assuming personal responsibility for our own well-being. Advocating for the rights of ourselves and others affected by HIV. Accepting our HIV status without taking it as a death sentence. Striving to be a positive example, role model, and/or community leader for others *Creating active partnerships with healthcare and service providers. Respecting others’ opinions and choices. Each of us need to develop a personal definition of self-empowerment and implement it in his or her own life. POIs Page 8