I don’t believe in hope.
Look up at the stars. Yeah, their light is often associated with hope. If things seem black, and you’re feeling lost, hope can often act as the light inside that keeps you away from the abyss of despair. I get that.
But a lot of people use hope as a placeholder for wishful thinking, and a mask for fear. If you can substitute “wish” for “hope” in a sentence, you’ll get my point. I have hoped so hard, with such great fear behind it, for things to happen, or not happen, in the world, and my “hope” has been disappointed. People have left, by death or otherwise, against all my hope that they would stay. This kind of hope I have no use for.
Both kinds of hope, though, say: things are not right for me now, but when something happens, they will be, and I’ll be happy again. As long as you have hope, it means that you aren’t in joy, you aren’t happy yet. Like the opposite of worry, I suppose. Both hope and worry are about the future, which is not here and now. Although, as an optimist, I think if I had to live in the future and not the present, I’d choose hope over worry.
But I’m working real hard to live in the present, which means dancing with sorrow and joy rather than worry and hope (the future), or regret and nostalgia (the past). “How do you feel now?” That’s the important question.
What do I believe in? I believe in knowing, right now. Sort of like Yoda saying “Know or do not know; there is no hope.” Hope is like wanting. It may make you feel a little better in dark times, but it won’t necessarily make the dark times dissipate. Knowing deep inside your soul your power to create; that will change things. It’s a subtle difference, but I find it works very well to keep me going and living in the now at the same time.
So, what do you see as the advantages and/or disadvantages of hope? How does hope work or not for you?