DrmDoc

What is faith?

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From the opening post.

On ‎4‎/‎29‎/‎2018 at 1:39 PM, DrmDoc said:

As I perceive, faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas. 

I think this is a good start to try and understand faith.

Quote

Some of you may view science as an attack on that shield.

Science is not an attack on faith, but there are situations where you cannot rely on science for help.

 

On ‎4‎/‎29‎/‎2018 at 1:39 PM, DrmDoc said:

What have you observed, experienced, or accomplished that supports your faith? 

I have volunteered as a Street Pastor for the last eleven years, we wonder round our town until 4 -5 am on a Saturday morning; just to be with people who might need help. We come across a whole range of situations including drunken violence; I can remember the first time a group of about a dozen people were fighting. We have this dilemma, on the one hand there are all the risk assessments; policies and radio contact with the police; or we can just pray and go. As we approached; one man was punched to the ground, another was being kicked on the road and we saw a woman punched in the face.

There is very little we can do other than walk in the middle and try and keep people apart. I can only say that I experience a profound sense of peace which is beyond my understanding, it seems that over time these angry people absorb our peace and the fighting stops. We stay with them a while, and when it is time to part company, these once angry people shake our hands and give us a hug.

I was in my sixties at the time and my partners were two ladies in their seventies. We go out in our weakness and put our faith and trust in God; and somehow good things seem to happen.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Eric H said:

I have volunteered as a Street Pastor for the last eleven years, we wonder round our town until 4 -5 am on a Saturday morning; just to be with people who might need help. We come across a whole range of situations including drunken violence; I can remember the first time a group of about a dozen people were fighting. We have this dilemma, on the one hand there are all the risk assessments; policies and radio contact with the police; or we can just pray and go. As we approached; one man was punched to the ground, another was being kicked on the road and we saw a woman punched in the face.

There is very little we can do other than walk in the middle and try and keep people apart. I can only say that I experience a profound sense of peace which is beyond my understanding, it seems that over time these angry people absorb our peace and the fighting stops. We stay with them a while, and when it is time to part company, these once angry people shake our hands and give us a hug.

I was in my sixties at the time and my partners were two ladies in their seventies. We go out in our weakness and put our faith and trust in God; and somehow good things seem to happen.

This stance isn't really discussable. You can preach it, but ultimately we can't reach a reasoned perspective for this effect of your faith. We can point to many non-religious reasons why interventions can be effective. We can point out how these situations could easily go wrong, and that your faith would be of little value against determined malice. Then you would point out that they haven't killed you yet, your faith would deflect any reasonableness we might introduce, and we'd be back to square one. 

I can certainly understand the profound feelings you have walking around late at night looking for dangerous situations to defuse, but I don't think you need faith in a god(s) to achieve them. ER nurses and ambulance drivers (among many others) often have these profound feelings when helping their fellow humans. It's part of our biology to be cooperative and nurturing with each other. No religion necessary. In fact, I think it makes the helpful nature more sincere when you're doing it for the person and not the god(s).

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Phi for All said:

This stance isn't really discussable. You can preach it, but ultimately we can't reach a reasoned perspective for this effect of your faith.

The opening post asks how has faith helped, I have simply replied.

 

9 hours ago, Phi for All said:

We can point to many non-religious reasons why interventions can be effective.

Our intervention was non religious, we did not preach, we just walked in the middle of angry drunks fighting. Why would you call that a religious intervention?

 

9 hours ago, Phi for All said:

We can point out how these situations could easily go wrong

We already know we could get hurt, but faith helps us to take that risk. If it were risk free; then we would not need faith.

 

9 hours ago, Phi for All said:

ER nurses and ambulance drivers (among many others) often have these profound feelings when helping their fellow humans

Of course they do, and I admire them greatly.

 

9 hours ago, Phi for All said:

In fact, I think it makes the helpful nature more sincere when you're doing it for the person and not the god(s).

We don't get paid; nurses and ambulance drivers generally do, so they have an incentive also. And I still respect and admire their dedication to the job, generally ambulance drivers will not try and break up fights, they leave it to the police.

When we try and help someone, we put their needs first, we pray and ask for God's help, because so often we would feel out of our comfort zone doing the things we do.

Edited by Eric H

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17 hours ago, Eric H said:

Our intervention was non religious, we did not preach, we just walked in the middle of angry drunks fighting. Why would you call that a religious intervention?

I didn't call it a religious intervention. You claimed your faith would overcome the dangers of the situations, and that your god would protect you during these interventions if you had enough faith. What I did say was that there are many non-religious reasons why your tactic was successful. You even point out that you didn't bring your religion into the actual intervention, other than to use it to blind yourselves to the negative consequences of your actions. Basically you're a bunch of sober folks trying to soothe the belligerence of fellow humans in an altered state. I commend you for doing good works, but I give the credit solely to you and your comrades, and none at all to any deity.

I understand that faith in the idea that your god is watching over you to shield you from consequences gives you the strength to do things like this, but I think the concept of being an imperfect sinner also blinds you to your own strengths and abilities. I suspect this is also why some think faith is the strongest form of belief when it has no rational or trustworthy basis. 

17 hours ago, Eric H said:

We already know we could get hurt, but faith helps us to take that risk. If it were risk free; then we would not need faith.

So faith allows you to take risks, and even if you do get hurt, the same faith tells you it's for the best. And if you get killed, you'll be in a better place. Everything is god's will, so having faith means every outcome is the best outcome. It's easy to see the attraction.

17 hours ago, Eric H said:

When we try and help someone, we put their needs first, we pray and ask for God's help, because so often we would feel out of our comfort zone doing the things we do.

God tells you to do things outside your comfort zone?

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On 4/18/2019 at 2:26 AM, Moontanman said:

 

Quote mine much? You guys left out the qualifier of faith I used... Not to mention I was answering someone who stated what we think of as woo will be science... 

You guys also left out the rest of the conversation I was replying to where it was said woo will become science. 

I am not clear how stating the blindingly obvious without recourse to an internet or library search consitutes quote mining. Nor do I find it surprising that two members might come up with the same examples, when they are so prominent.

On 4/18/2019 at 2:26 AM, Moontanman said:

You guys left out the qualifier of faith I used.

Can you point me to the faith qualifier. I don't see it.

On 4/18/2019 at 2:26 AM, Moontanman said:

Not to mention I was answering someone who stated what we think of as woo will be science

All the more reason that your statements should be factually accurate.

 

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2 hours ago, Phi for All said:

You claimed your faith would overcome the dangers of the situations, and that your god would protect you during these interventions if you had enough faith.

I may have just missed it but I didn't notice that claim by Eric H. I just saw him say he has faith, and things have worked out.

 

2 hours ago, Phi for All said:

God tells you to do things outside your comfort zone?

What he said was that he initiated the interaction by praying to god for help. He didn't say God tells him to do things outside his comfort zone.

Don't mean to be difficult but it feels like you are putting words in Eric's mouth to bolster your position.

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On 4/17/2019 at 2:41 PM, Intrigued said:

 

 

On 4/17/2019 at 2:14 PM, Strange said:

 

You guys are right, my response was almost exactly the opposite of what I meant to say. I missed it even rereading it. I must be getting senile. My intent was to ask for something the supernatural had taught us that superseded science. I remember the exchange but why I wrote what I did I cannot explain. 

 

I apologize for the quote mining accusation... 

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On 4/18/2019 at 9:42 PM, Eric H said:

From the opening post.

I think this is a good start to try and understand faith.

Science is not an attack on faith, but there are situations where you cannot rely on science for help.

 

I have volunteered as a Street Pastor for the last eleven years, we wonder round our town until 4 -5 am on a Saturday morning; just to be with people who might need help. We come across a whole range of situations including drunken violence; I can remember the first time a group of about a dozen people were fighting. We have this dilemma, on the one hand there are all the risk assessments; policies and radio contact with the police; or we can just pray and go. As we approached; one man was punched to the ground, another was being kicked on the road and we saw a woman punched in the face.

There is very little we can do other than walk in the middle and try and keep people apart. I can only say that I experience a profound sense of peace which is beyond my understanding, it seems that over time these angry people absorb our peace and the fighting stops. We stay with them a while, and when it is time to part company, these once angry people shake our hands and give us a hug.

I was in my sixties at the time and my partners were two ladies in their seventies. We go out in our weakness and put our faith and trust in God; and somehow good things seem to happen.

I highly commend you on the great charitable work you are doing...fantastic stuff nd there should be more like you. But please don't pretend that anything that you face, dangers etc, can be alleviated or helped by praying or any faith. I hate bullies, and I have on at least three occasions in my life [one with relation to my then 6 year old Son] acted against such bullies, twice at my own possible detriment and danger. Let me also say I am married to a true Christian, for 42 years now, both our one and only marriages. Some here may find that hard to believe after noting some of my replies and reactions to god botherers and religious fanaticism I have replied to. The secret? None other then tolerence of each other with of course respect and love.

My self and my wife also are sponsoring a child with a reputable orginization from Africa and have done so for the last 20 years or so. There are some great sympathetic people out there that really care for those less fortunate and do something little to try and help out...some are Christian like yourself and my wife, some are agnostic, and others are Atheistic. By the same token there are some despicable so called Chistians out there as well as some despicable so called Atheists.

 

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34 minutes ago, beecee said:

But please don't pretend that anything that you face, dangers etc, can be alleviated or helped by praying or any faith

Just curious but how does that sort of comment go over with your wife? I know my wife would be less than pleased if I suggested her beliefs were "pretending". :D

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3 hours ago, Moontanman said:

 

You guys are right, my response was almost exactly the opposite of what I meant to say. I missed it even rereading it. I must be getting senile. My intent was to ask for something the supernatural had taught us that superseded science. I remember the exchange but why I wrote what I did I cannot explain. 

 

I apologize for the quote mining accusation... 

Thank you for that. Your argument didn't seem to match other posts of yours I think I had read. so I was puzzled.

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1 hour ago, zapatos said:

Just curious but how does that sort of comment go over with your wife? I know my wife would be less than pleased if I suggested her beliefs were "pretending". :D

As per your's, less then pleased. But also tolerant. She always asks me once a year [around Chrissy] to come to church with her. I always promise next year. :P But she does have her choir group around once a month for singing practise. I always politely join them when they finish and mix a bowl of kava [Yaqona] Some interesting conversations develop. :D

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On 4/18/2019 at 12:33 AM, Intrigued said:

I found my question relevant to almost every point and question in DrmDoc's OP, but I'll just select one example. DrmDoc said this:

"What have you observed, experienced, or accomplished that supports your faith?"

If an individual believes that faith has predominantly, or even exclusively positive and profound benefits this will provide a justification for their faith. If they do not hold such a view, then we must look elsewhere for the source of their  belief. Consequently I was interested to learn what EricH's position was on this. (And still am!)

I agree with both of these comments. I think perspective is a limiting factor of identity.

I will answer a lot more.  I've little time over Easter.   

 

On 4/18/2019 at 12:39 AM, Strange said:

I suspect that any negative effects of faith are only perceived by other people.

For example, someone might consider it to be a negative effect of faith that a Jehovah's Witness can't have a life-saving blood transfusion. But the JW would not see this as negative, just a "fact of life".

And, I suppose, a person of faith might go further and say that the negative effects only exist in the perception of the outsider.

 

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51 minutes ago, beecee said:

As per your's, less then pleased. But also tolerant. She always asks me once a year [around Chrissy] to come to church with her. I always promise next year. :P But she does have her choir group around once a month for singing practise. I always politely join them when they finish and mix a bowl of kava [Yaqona] Some interesting conversations develop. :D

When my kids were growing up their mother took them to church because they knew that for some reason the grocery shopping could only be done by me on Sunday mornings. Once they figured out the grocery stores were actually open all week, my wife had to put up with years of "but if dad's not going why do I have to?!?!" :P

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On 4/18/2019 at 2:02 AM, Intrigued said:

Take your time. I'm in no hurry. Just make sure your terms are defined and that there are no ambiguous pronouns.

Thank you. 

I know I am well out of my depth here, yet this is where trying to solve a problem has brought me and its hard to let go.

It will need to be one piece at a time or it will overwhelm me.

 

So this space of identity. I will define it as the area or environment of its being. 

Its conditions and dimensions decided by Response ability. What it can come to know, recognise and respond to.

Does that make sense?

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Posted (edited)
On 4/17/2019 at 5:11 PM, Intrigued said:

 

How to measure White Nationalism? For example, determine preferred reactions to hypothetical situations. Or, measure the degree of acceptance of negative stereotypes of non-whites. It should not be too difficult for a comeptent sociologist to come up with several protocols that would ahndle this.

Perspective is a big part of this.

The perspective chosen will have a lot of bearing on measurement, if  identity as a space holds up to scrutiny.

We can measure it from a perspective of environment, where its a condition to be accepted or rejected. Your proposed measurements seem to suggest that perspective. 

Rejection though doesn't just target White Nationalism. To be effective it would need to target the supporting or contributing factors that may not in themselves be harmful conditions . Being White is likely the main one. So that part of the Human environment is discredited. 

Or 'we' could view white Nationalism as a condition within the body (or 'space') of a 'Human identity', that unchecked,  is harmful  to that body. With supporting factors that could be known and understood, or recognised, and addressed.(response)

As a  perspective of being (human) that can be corrected.

Recognition of potential,  or response, would be the positive value to the Human space. 

White Nationalists are unable to recognise the value of other conditions.   What values or conditions are they perceiving,  and Why? 

Why do they feel they need the shield or faith of white Nationalism?

 

 

 

What messages are they acting on and why the need to bang on the walls to be heard? Devaluation?

Edited by naitche

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Posted (edited)

Re: Characterisation of a condition. I mean the same as the accepted definition. Characterising a cultural condition by either  giving or deducting characteristics that don't fall within that conditions strict definition. Or Characterisation by association.

It seems to me we are in agreement that is damaging to the human environment. Then use characterisation to combat it. 

 

Edited by naitche

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13 hours ago, Phi for All said:

You claimed your faith would overcome the dangers of the situations,

We will all die at some point, so there are no guarantees in any situation.

Quote

and that your god would protect you during these interventions if you had enough faith.

Faith is about giving you the courage to do doing something, when you are not sure of the outcome, we hope that something good will happen.

I can sit here and say, I believe parachuting is easy, but the only way to have faith in parachuting, is to put one on, go up in a plane and jump. If I jump once, I have faith once, if I jump ten times, then I have faith ten times. But what happens if I have an accident or a close encounter with death whilst parachuting, will I have the faith to jump one more time?

Street Pastors have secular risk assessments, policies and procedures to comply with the law of the land. We had training from the police and paramedics, much of which was about trying to avoid risks and risky situations. We have had no training at all regarding self defence.

I guess it is hard to understand our motivation to do things, I hate violence and I hate to see other people get hurt, I want to see our community become a kinder and more caring place for my family, friends, children and grandchildren. Faith in God helps me to do something, rather than sit in the pub and moan about the state of the world.

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5 hours ago, naitche said:

Perspective is a big part of this.

The perspective chosen will have a lot of bearing on measurement, if  identity as a space holds up to scrutiny.

We can measure it from a perspective of environment, where its a condition to be accepted or rejected. Your proposed measurements seem to suggest that perspective. 

Rejection though doesn't just target White Nationalism. To be effective it would need to target the supporting or contributing factors that may not in themselves be harmful conditions . Being White is likely the main one. So that part of the Human environment is discredited. 

Or 'we' could view white Nationalism as a condition within the body (or 'space') of a 'Human identity', that unchecked,  is harmful  to that body. With supporting factors that could be known and understood, or recognised, and addressed.(response)

As a  perspective of being (human) that can be corrected.

Recognition of potential,  or response, would be the positive value to the Human space. 

White Nationalists are unable to recognise the value of other conditions.   What values or conditions are they perceiving,  and Why? 

Why do they feel they need the shield or faith of white Nationalism?

What messages are they acting on and why the need to bang on the walls to be heard? Devaluation?

It seems, from my perspective, that your views are more heavily weighted with perspective than mine. Can I justify this? I think I can.

In my post, which you addressed, you suggest that I have viewed White Nationalism (WN) as something to be accepted as rejected. I commend a second reading of my original post. Nowhere do I imply WN should be rejected. My interest, in that post and this conversation, is the measurement of WN; how might it objectively and quantitatively be measured. Such measurements could support condemnation/rejection, or they could identify for White Nationalists individuals sympathetic to their views. The measurement is independent of how it is subsequently used and it might be used to support, attack, or simply observe WN.

That said, I agree that often measurements are taken in order to support an agenda, or test a hypothesis. When NASA first looked for life on Mars the experiments carried out by the Viking Landers were done from the perspective that their might be active life present in the regolith. The results of those experiments, seen as negative, meant that perspective changed. Subsequent investigations looked for water and evidence of the action of water.

2 hours ago, Eric H said:

Faith is about giving you the courage to do doing something, when you are not sure of the outcome, we hope that something good will happen.

I can sit here and say, I believe parachuting is easy, but the only way to have faith in parachuting, is to put one on, go up in a plane and jump. If I jump once, I have faith once, if I jump ten times, then I have faith ten times. But what happens if I have an accident or a close encounter with death whilst parachuting, will I have the faith to jump one more time?

Why would I waste time and angst having faith in parachuting? If I think I might like to make a parachute jump I carry out what in current buzz words is called a risk assessment. This might include a look at the accident statistics for jumps, discussion with experienced and novice jumpers, reviews of the group or company I shall make the jump with, objective examination of the physical skill set and mental attitude I would bring to the jump, relevance of weather conditions and landing terrain, etc. On completion of that analysis I would have a realistic, semi-quantitative measure of the risk involved in a jump. Faith would have no relevance. I would jump confident that the odds were in favour of a successful jump, with only a small risk of minor injury and very small risk of death.

In short, why  oh why, would I base my decisions on an emotional and wholly subjective appreciation of an imagined world, when I could rely on an objective assessment of risk. Unattractive as it often is, I vote for reality at every opportunity.

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2 hours ago, Intrigued said:

It seems, from my perspective, that your views are more heavily weighted with perspective than mine. Can I justify this? I think I can.

In my post, which you addressed, you suggest that I have viewed White Nationalism (WN) as something to be accepted as rejected. I commend a second reading of my original post. Nowhere do I imply WN should be rejected. My interest, in that post and this conversation, is the measurement of WN; how might it objectively and quantitatively be measured. Such measurements could support condemnation/rejection, or they could identify for White Nationalists individuals sympathetic to their views. The measurement is independent of how it is subsequently used and it might be used to support, attack, or simply observe WN.

 

   Sorry. I see I did that, but it wasn't my intent.

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1 minute ago, naitche said:

   Sorry. I see I did that, but it wasn't my intent.

I suspected as much, but I'm not clear what point you were trying to make. I think most would agree that perspective can and often does influence the questions we ask as well as the answers we give. Many would say, and I would agree, that this is normal and understood and not necessarily negative. All well and good, but how are you tying this into the role, or character  of faith?

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Posted (edited)

There would seem to be a bit of a misconception that religious faith or faith in a god is the same as my faith in my wife or my car starting or the sun appearing to rise in the morning. These things are not accepted on faith they are reasonable expectations based on past actions and events. Faith is not a path to truth, one can believe anything based on faith as described in the Holy Bible... 

Oh BTW, there are very few things more annoying than a street preacher but they do seem to result in a lot of people doubting religion... 

Edited by Moontanman
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1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

There would seem to be a bit of a misconception that religious faith or faith in a god is the same as my faith in my wife or my car starting or the sun appearing to rise in the morning. These things are not accepted on faith they are reasonable expectations based on past actions and events.

 you're faith that today will happen tomorrow?

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5 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

 you're faith that today will happen tomorrow?

 That one went over my head, can you clarify? 

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4 hours ago, Intrigued said:

In short, why  oh why, would I base my decisions on an emotional and wholly subjective appreciation of an imagined world, when I could rely on an objective assessment of risk. Unattractive as it often is, I vote for reality at every opportunity.

I think the breakdown in discussions between the religious and those who are not is that so often one side doesn't really listen to the other. I don't think Eric was trying to tell you why you should use faith, but was instead telling you what faith means to him and how he uses it. As with most things there are many ways to approach a problem. 

With parachuting Eric uses his religious techniques, you use risk analysis, while others use financial, image or adrenaline considerations. In short, each of us uses what is important and useful to us as individuals. Not everyone relies strictly on logic and science.

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3 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 That one went over my head, can you clarify? 

tomorrow, maybe... :ph34r:

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