Trust, confidence, reliance and fidelity are elements of Faith. Strangely, though, Faith is at its most creative when all its elements are absent. When one feels that all hope is lost – does not trust or have confidence in anyone, and does not believe that she can rely on anyone, or that fidelity will ever be rewarded – that is when Faith can produce its greatest miracles. Of course, this is mainly and perhaps exclusively a product of our perceptions. The result was possible all along but we did not see it. Faith does not change the objective reality; it changes us, and when we change, we gain power to affect our environment.
That can begin with trust. Though Faith will stir us most when we thought all was lost, trust is also an important spiritual muscle that needs exercise.
- Steven M.R. Covey, The Speed of Trust: The One Thing That Changes Everything (Free Press, 2006).
- Cheryl Lynn Greenberg, ed., A Circle of Trust: Remembering SNCC (Rutgers University Press, 1998).'
- Terry Weible Murphy, Michael Jenike and Edward E. Zine, Life in Rewind: The Story of a Young Courageous Man Who Persevered Over OCD and the Harvard Doctor Who Broke All the Rules to Help Him (William Morrow, 2009).
- S.J. Watson, Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel (Harper, 2011): can she trust her husband, or herself?
Technical and Analytical Readings
- Eric M. Uslaner, The Moral Foundations of Trust (Cambridge University Press, 2002).
- Reinhard Bachmann and Akbar Zaheer, eds., Handbook of Trust Research (Edward Elgar Publishing , 2006).
- Roderick M. Kramer, Organizational Trust: A Reader (Oxford University Press, 2007).
- Mark N.K. Saunders, Denise Skinner, Graham Dietz, Nicole Gillespie and Roy J. Lewicki, Organizational Trust: A Cultural Perspective (Cambridge University Press, 2010).
- Trudy Govier, Social Trust and Human Communities (McGill-Queen's University Press, 1997).
- Trudy Govier, Dilemmas of Trust (Carleton University Press, 1999).
- Mark E. Warren, Democracy and Trust (Cambridge University Press, 1999).
- Adam B. Seligman, The Problem of Trust (Princeton University Press, 1997).
- Francis Fukuyama, Trust: The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity (Free Press, 1995).
- Steven Sloman and Philip Fernbach, The Knowledge Illusion: Why We Never Think Alone (Riverhead Books, 2017): “Humans rarely think for themselves. Rather, we think in groups. Just as it takes a tribe to raise a child, it also takes a tribe to invent a tool, solve a conflict or cure a disease. No individual knows everything it takes to build a cathedral, an atom bomb or an aircraft. What gave Homo sapiens an edge over all other animals and turned us into the masters of the planet was not our individual rationality, but our unparalleled ability to think together in large groups.”
- Walter Dean Myers, Sunrise over Fallujah (Scholastic Press, 2008).
- F.E. Higgins, The Black Book of Secrets (Fiewel and Friends, 2007).
- Olen Steinhauer, The Tourist (Minotaur, 2009).
- Susan Choi, Trust Exercise: A Novel (Henry Holt & Company, 2019): “It’s about sophomore theater students, their souls in flux. It’s about misplaced trust in adults, and about female friendships gone dangerously awry. In the end, it’s about cruelty. Satisfyingly, it’s also about revenge.”
- N.K. Jemsin, The City We Became: A Novel (Orbit, 2020): “. . . its main project is one of bridge-building, knitting communities together, showing how the embodied boroughs must overcome their own prejudices, their own irritations and limitations, to embrace and trust one another before they can win the fight.”
- John Everett Millais, Trust Me (1862)
Film and Stage
- A Passage to India, adapted from the E.M. Forster novel, the film is “a story of what can happen as a result of a succession of wrong-headed decisions and dreadful misunderstandings, of trust either given too easily or withheld far too long”
- La Femme Nikita, presenting the “paradoxical concept of a young woman blossoming socially while carrying out cold-blooded murders,” this film tests our ability to find dignity amid evil
Music: Composers, artists, and major works
In a sonata for any two instruments, the two players rely on each other to be sure but we hear this more clearly in the cello sonata format than in most two-voice sonatas. The reason for this is the cello’s baritone voice, which lends an air of seriousness to any composition where it plays a leading role. In its nascent form, the cello sonata sounds like an underpinning of Faith: trust.
- Boccherini, complete cello sonatas
- Vivaldi, cello sonatas
- Bach, Cello Sonatas: No. 1 in G major, bwv 1027; No. 2 in D major, bwv 1028; No. 3 in G minor, bwv 1029
From the shadows: In these two works by Hendrik Andriessen, the soloist struggles with trust, as the other players wander off repeatedly.
Although she feeds me bread of bitterness, / And sinks into my throat her tiger’s tooth, / Stealing my breath of life, I will confess / I love this cultured hell that tests my youth. / Her vigor flows like tides into my blood, / Giving me strength erect against her hate, / Her bigness sweeps my being like a flood.
Yet, as a rebel fronts a king in state, / I stand within her walls with not a shred / Of terror, malice, not a word of jeer. / Darkly I gaze into the days ahead, / And see her might and granite wonders there, / Beneath the touch of Time’s unerring hand, / Like priceless treasures sinking in the sand.
[Claude McKay, “America”]
- John Keats, “O Blush Not So!”
Music: songs and other short pieces
- Mary Chapin Carpenter and Joe Diffie, Not Too Much To Ask