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What is faith?


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2 hours ago, Endercreeper01 said:

Oneself can trust oneself that it exists. Once that is accepted, it can lead oneself down a path of faith.

Tell that to a schizophrenic. 

1 hour ago, Phi for All said:

So you've chosen to focus inward to the exclusion of knowledge of the natural world. I think that's a mistake. It seems like trying to fix the notes of a song without playing/singing if through first. Or like trying to guess all the infinite possibilities of what might be inside a package without first trying to look at it from the outside, and at least measure the box (with all your senses) so you have a better idea of what it could hold. Or like deciding that you don't need to walk carefully across the lake of thin ice if you focus on leaping only to the bits that look safe.

This is one of the big flaws associated with faith. The faithful understand that if they searched for evidence they would find none and would undermine their own beliefs. so instead they attempt to create a standard where searching for evidence in itself either can't be done or is somehow disrespectful. . 

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! Moderator Note It's quite clear from the OP that the faith discussed in this thread is from believers in religion.   ! Moderator Note

7 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

This is one of the big flaws associated with faith. The faithful understand that if they searched for evidence they would find none and would undermine their own beliefs. so instead they attempt to create a standard where searching for evidence in itself either can't be done or is somehow disrespectful. . 

WRT a deity who actually requests belief without support, like the Abrahamic god, I think it IS disrespectful to look for evidence to support your faith. It was considered a breach of faith to require the son of god to prove himself by showing his disciples the face of his father. Religious/mystical/supernatural beliefs are unique in that they don't require any trustworthy outside verification to match them with what we observe in nature, and that's why I insist on a separate definition for that type of belief, that's why we call it faith. The same is applicable to any unobservable higher power people choose to believe in. If there's no evidence to support its existence, you're using faith to believe in it. 

It's power is to unite people strongly, hopefully for good reasons. Faith in the basic goodness of humanity is not a bad thing.

That's partly why I think using faith is dangerous for a single human developing their belief system. It's like going into the jungle for the first time by parachuting alone into the middle with nothing but your faith, absolutely 100% assured you know the best route out.

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14 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

WRT a deity who actually requests belief without support, like the Abrahamic god, I think it IS disrespectful to look for evidence to support your faith. It was considered a breach of faith to require the son of god to prove himself by showing his disciples the face of his father. Religious/mystical/supernatural beliefs are unique in that they don't require any trustworthy outside verification to match them with what we observe in nature, and that's why I insist on a separate definition for that type of belief, that's why we call it faith. The same is applicable to any unobservable higher power people choose to believe in. If there's no evidence to support its existence, you're using faith to believe in it. 

It's power is to unite people strongly, hopefully for good reasons. Faith in the basic goodness of humanity is not a bad thing.

That's partly why I think using faith is dangerous for a single human developing their belief system. It's like going into the jungle for the first time by parachuting alone into the middle with nothing but your faith, absolutely 100% assured you know the best route out.

I almost got him to sleep, so don't blame me on page 21, when he throws it all up again...

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8 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

WRT a deity who actually requests belief without support, like the Abrahamic god, I think it IS disrespectful to look for evidence to support your faith. It was considered a breach of faith to require the son of god to prove himself by showing his disciples the face of his father. Religious/mystical/supernatural beliefs are unique in that they don't require any trustworthy outside verification to match them with what we observe in nature, and that's why I insist on a separate definition for that type of belief, that's why we call it faith. The same is applicable to any unobservable higher power people choose to believe in. If there's no evidence to support its existence, you're using faith to believe in it. 

It's power is to unite people strongly, hopefully for good reasons. Faith in the basic goodness of humanity is not a bad thing.

That's partly why I think using faith is dangerous for a single human developing their belief system. It's like going into the jungle for the first time by parachuting alone into the middle with nothing but your faith, absolutely 100% assured you know the best route out.

While this makes sense to the faithful it is actual just a mechanism to get around not have any evidence (any tangle reason for believing in what they believe in).  

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22 minutes ago, Ten oz said:

(any tangle reason for believing in what they believe in).  

You toggled your checker from "spelling" to "irony" again, didn't you? :lol:

And that's why it's hard to argue with faith. When something you've dreamt up makes such perfect sense to you, the emotional emphasis makes the idea SEEM tangible. You become convinced you're right, and you're sure there's a good way to explain it but you can never come up with the reasoning, it always seems just out of reach.

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6 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

You toggled your checker from "spelling" to "irony" again, didn't you? :lol:

Ironic on a couple levels. Without an external observer I wouldn't have noticed the error. 

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8 hours ago, Endercreeper01 said:

You could say that there is no ground for my personal faith. 

I believe many have been trying to tell you that over the last 16 pages or so.I

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would disagree because I see my faith as grounded in a particular set of beliefs, as part of a world view.

Faith has a basis in a personal worldview.

 

Your faith is grounded in the fact that man since he first climbed down out of the trees, has been asking many questions and wondered at the awesome nature of the universe that surrounds him. No satisfactory answer was forthcoming, so he turned to magic in those early days, and saw this mythical higher power in many things that he could not explain. This has carried on down through the ages. Then science came along, and all was revealed...at least up to t+10-43 seconds.

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Nice thinking, although it hardly defeats my statement....

Your statement/argument is defeated because it has no basis in what we observe nor any empirical evidence to support it.

Edited by beecee
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On 6/23/2018 at 8:54 AM, Endercreeper01 said:

Yes, by putting faith in the self.

Therefore, your idea of faith involves self deification.  Although it isn't an original notion, the idea of deifying one's self draws power from belief alone rather than any real or tangible support. Indeed, IMO, this idea is a mental placebo because its basis isn't supported by anything other than belief.  It's a sugar pill that can imbue believers with an empowering, albeit, false sense of self. 

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31 minutes ago, Scotty99 said:

Faith is using your brain to come to the most logical conclusion possible. Depending on your level of intellect, the definition will change.

If "most logical" meant "makes the most sense to me".

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14 minutes ago, Phi for All said:

If "most logical" meant "makes the most sense to me".

No i mean logical, that is where the intellect part comes into play.

 

Im just going to make this edit, because i dont think like most people do. I don't base my faith on anything other than logic, including the best guess we have to the reality of our existence based on factual findings. We know enough about our existence to come to a best guess scenario, the problem is most people are unwilling to go there because they are too vested in an idea that was entrenched in their mind at an early age. I mean from both sides btw.

Edited by Scotty99
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13 minutes ago, Scotty99 said:

No i mean logical, that is where the intellect part comes into play.

Then you mean rational. Logic is for maths and philosophy. Forget what Spock said, Mr Scott.

15 minutes ago, Scotty99 said:

Im just going to make this edit, because i dont think like most people do. I don't base my faith on anything other than logic, including the best guess we have to the reality of our existence based on factual findings. We know enough about our existence to come to a best guess scenario, the problem is most people are unwilling to go there because they are too vested in an idea that was entrenched in their mind at an early age. I mean from both sides btw.

Don't like religion, don't feel like studying formal science? Both are full of hidebound folks who don't have your unique understanding?

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There are logical explanations as to how our universe is laid out that would befit a viewpoint as such i have. And yes i do have a fairly unique standpoint here, but it does not come from a place of wanting to be a snowflake. We have the best answer possible right now, its just going to take a bit of time before it gets accepted on a mainstream level. It likely wont be in my lifetime but it is inevitable, people just need to exercise their imaginations first.

Edited by Scotty99
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If faith is seen  as the same thing as a belief in a God, then it doesn't apply to me.  

I can't say why people do have that belief because its subjective to their own perspective.

 

My interpretation of faith is  when someone  is dependent on a  perspective as being central to the value of identity. 

Being faithful to an idea. Not turning aside from a  value recognised, to enable recognition of others.

Holding on to that rope for dear life with all your focus on the view in front of you, So you can't see the step that would change your circumstance or the danger in its condition.

I don't think you can understand faith in a  belief unless you can separate the two.

If you can't,  I don't think  it can be a scientific question either. 

My interest in faith isn't in its specific manifestation of a belief in god, or discrediting one.

Science can't do that. Science is dependent on evidence and to assume otherwise is assuming properties of science it hasn't got. 

 Individual perspective is essential to diversity.

 

My interest is in when diversity of perspective is not recognised or valued. When perspective is fixed, and seeks to enforce its view of reality as correct.

Even when its missing the pieces needed for it to be.

 

Edited by naitche
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11 hours ago, naitche said:

My interpretation of faith is  when someone  is dependent on a  perspective as being central to the value of identity. 

Why does dependency on a perspective change the way we believe in it? I depend on critical thought, which is data gathered as information using reason, tested rigorously so I can trust it to accurately represent what we observe in nature, so I can make informed choices that reflect the value of my identity. I would no more call that faith than I would call a hammer a saw or a drill. I depend on science as the most accurate, objective way to derive such information, and I see no value in listening to any individual perspective that doesn't agree with natural observation and experiment. I know why you think it's important, but I also know you can't understand why science is based on trust and not faith if you don't bother to study it rigorously. It's intellectually dishonest to discount scientific principles if you haven't studied them. 

13 hours ago, naitche said:

My interest is in when diversity of perspective is not recognised or valued. When perspective is fixed, and seeks to enforce its view of reality as correct.

This is a common claim from those facing rigorous pushback from sceptics. Since science ALWAYS looks for the best supported explanations, and uses them as a test for other explanations (Can your TOE match the accuracy of Relativity?), it can seem hidebound, especially since you may not understand the whole theory (which is probably why you might think it's wrong and needs fixing). Science perspective isn't fixed at all. In fact, that's one of the big differences between trusted beliefs and faithful beliefs; trusted beliefs are capable of figuring out when they're wrong or incomplete.

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16 hours ago, naitche said:

If faith is seen  as the same thing as a belief in a God, then it doesn't apply to me.  

I'm pretty sure that claiming that some "higher power" exists, is equated to a god like delusion and the faith we are talking about. Not to be confused of course with  the trust I have that my car will start in the morning as opposed to faith.

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I don't think you can understand faith in a  belief unless you can separate the two.

Faith in any belief in any semblance of any higher power again springs from ancient stone age man, and his thirst to know, and obviously before the logic of science came about. Also of course not being able to face that rather emotionless, cold hard reality that science has led us to, in that we are simply a product of evolution and an assembly of elements synthesised in the belly of stars and that when we are dead, we are dead...nothing more, nothing less.

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If you can't,  I don't think  it can be a scientific question either. 

It is in fact ignoring science and the knowledge therein gained at worst, and simply the unscientific alternative at best

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My interest in faith isn't in its specific manifestation of a belief in god, or discrediting one.

Again, generally speaking, when people talk of their faith, they are referring to their belief/faith in a higher power/god

 

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Science can't do that. Science is dependent on evidence and to assume otherwise is assuming properties of science it hasn't got. 

I see that as a quality of science: And of course there is not one of us here or anywhere else that can ever ignore all of science, and all the benefits etc that we take for granted due to science.

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Individual perspective is essential to diversity.

My interest is in when diversity of perspective is not recognised or valued. When perspective is fixed, and seeks to enforce its view of reality as correct.

 

I don't believe anyone is forcing any "scientific perspective" [which seems to be the perspective you are talking about] onto anyone else, taking into account of course that this is first and foremost a science forum, and that anyone preaching any unscientific belief or faith on a science forum, will undoubtedly be asked to justify his faith/beliefs in line with the science methodology.

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Even when its missing the pieces needed for it to be

I'm pretty sure any scientist worth his salt, knows the current limitations of science and where we as yet do not have answers. To admit "We don't know" is OK.

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43 minutes ago, beecee said:

Not to be confused of course with  the trust I have that my car will start in the morning as opposed to faith.now" is OK.

Because you're trusting in your car's ability to start reliably, based on a variety of factors, not the least of which is that you recently had it serviced and tanked, it's summer so it isn't too cold for the battery, it has a history of starting with no problems, and it's only three years old. I'd probably be about 95% sure that car will start. 

But... if you borrow a friend's car without knowing anything about it, and you believe that car is going to start in the morning, you're using faith. You can't possibly know it will start, so you can either hope it will start (but keep your Uber app handy), or you can truly, 100% believe it will start right up using faith.

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1 hour ago, Phi for All said:

Because you're trusting in your car's ability to start reliably, based on a variety of factors, not the least of which is that you recently had it serviced and tanked, it's summer so it isn't too cold for the battery, it has a history of starting with no problems, and it's only three years old. I'd probably be about 95% sure that car will start.

Well actually its winter and bloody cold with this morning's temperature at a bone chilling 8C On the rest, have you been reading my mail?:P

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 4/29/2018 at 5:39 AM, DrmDoc said:

To the believers here who, oddly, chose to post to predominately science discussion forums, what is faith and why do you have it?  Perhaps you've discussed this topic variously before and, if so, I entreat your brief indulgence further.  My perusal of discussions here suggested to me that some of you do not seem to have a clear perspective of what distinguishes faith from science.  Most often arguments against science are used as justification for faith; however, those arguments do not appear to define a basis for your religious faith.  As I perceive, faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.  Some of you may view science as an attack on that shield.  However, none of this provides your understanding of faith or what compel your belief.  What have you observed, experienced, or accomplished that supports your faith?  Is that support tangible? 

DrmDoc:

Your comments, which I have bolded in blue, give the impression that "non-believers" aka atheists do not have faith and therefore are not religious.  The reality is that atheist have far more faith than theists.   A further reality is that atheists are as religious as theists.

As for your comments, which I bolded in red, where you explain that, to quote you: "faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas," that's interesting.  Particularly since atheists routinely use their faith as a means of coping with life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.

Alter2Ego

 

________________
"That people may know that you, whose name is JEHOVAH, you alone are the Most High over all the earth." ~ Psalms 83:18

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53 minutes ago, Alter2Ego said:

DrmDoc:

Your comments, which I have bolded in blue, give the impression that "non-believers" aka atheists do not have faith and therefore are not religious.  The reality is that atheist have far more faith than theists.   A further reality is that atheists are as religious as theists.

As for your comments, which I bolded in red, where you explain that, to quote you: "faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas," that's interesting.  Particularly since atheists routinely use their faith as a means of coping with life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.

Alter2Ego

 

________________
"That people may know that you, whose name is JEHOVAH, you alone are the Most High over all the earth." ~ Psalms 83:18

No faith is a belief in something without any evidence...It probably sprang from ancient man, in his search for answers and comfort and solace in a universe he was unable to explain.

Science is based on empirical evidence.

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2 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

Your comments, which I have bolded in blue, give the impression that "non-believers" aka atheists do not have faith and therefore are not religious.  The reality is that atheist have far more faith than theists.   A further reality is that atheists are as religious as theists.

While I don't doubt that some atheists have some faith in things other than god, I would like to see some evidence to support your claim that "atheist have far more faith than theists". What do you base this on?

And what definition of "religious" are you using when you say that "atheists are as religious as theists"? While it is true that "atheist" means not believing in a god, there are few religions that do not have a god or gods, so I find it implausible that atheists are as religious as theists. Do you have any evidence to support this claim?

 

2 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

Particularly since atheists routinely use their faith as a means of coping with life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.

What "faith" are you referring to here?

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11 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

DrmDoc:

Your comments, which I have bolded in blue, give the impression that "non-believers" aka atheists do not have faith and therefore are not religious.  The reality is that atheist have far more faith than theists.   A further reality is that atheists are as religious as theists.

 

How so? Please elaborate, what do atheists have faith in exactly? 

11 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

 

As for your comments, which I bolded in red, where you explain that, to quote you: "faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas," that's interesting.  Particularly since atheists routinely use their faith as a means of coping with life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.

 

Please elaborate what what do atheists have faith in exactly? 

11 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

Alter2Ego

 

________________
"That people may know that you, whose name is JEHOVAH, you alone are the Most High over all the earth." ~ Psalms 83:18

A side question if I may, why do you think this passage has any real world meaning? 

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21 hours ago, Alter2Ego said:

DrmDoc:

Your comments, which I have bolded in blue, give the impression that "non-believers" aka atheists do not have faith and therefore are not religious.  The reality is that atheist have far more faith than theists.   A further reality is that atheists are as religious as theists.

As for your comments, which I bolded in red, where you explain that, to quote you: "faith is a shield believers use against life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas," that's interesting.  Particularly since atheists routinely use their faith as a means of coping with life's doubts, insecurities, and traumas.

Alter2Ego

 

________________
"That people may know that you, whose name is JEHOVAH, you alone are the Most High over all the earth." ~ Psalms 83:18

Your response and tag here suggest to me that you are a person of faith who has thrown him or herself into this lion's den of scientific discussion. Why does a person of faith seek unwelcoming environments--such as a science discussion site--to engage in discussions of faith with staunch "non-believers"?  Is it done in defense of your faith or is it some hopeful evangelical effort?  Perhaps it's mostly about your own insecurities rather than some altruistic effort.  I guess we'll know for sure should you ever respond to this or any of the above posts.    

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33 minutes ago, DrmDoc said:

Your response and tag here suggest to me that you are a person of faith who has thrown him or herself into this lion's den of scientific discussion. Why does a person of faith seek unwelcoming environments--such as a science discussion site--to engage in discussions of faith with staunch "non-believers"?  Is it done in defense of your faith or is it some hopeful evangelical effort?  Perhaps it's mostly about your own insecurities rather than some altruistic effort.  I guess we'll know for sure should you ever respond to this or any of the above posts.    

How bloody true!!and an argument I have put up many times. Perhaps they envisage themselves on some sort of crusade, with the object of converting us bloody heathen atheist detestable creatures to the true light? :P I mean I often wonder what the result would be if I went to church this Sunday, and stood up the back shouting/preaching about how the universe is the ultimate free lunch and arose from nothing, and any need for any magical spaghetti monster was simply superfluous at best.:D The mind boggles!

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1 hour ago, DrmDoc said:

Your response and tag here suggest to me that you are a person of faith who has thrown him or herself into this lion's den of scientific discussion. Why does a person of faith seek unwelcoming environments--such as a science discussion site--to engage in discussions of faith with staunch "non-believers"?  Is it done in defense of your faith or is it some hopeful evangelical effort?  Perhaps it's mostly about your own insecurities rather than some altruistic effort.  I guess we'll know for sure should you ever respond to this or any of the above posts.    

 

1 hour ago, beecee said:

How bloody true!!and an argument I have put up many times. Perhaps they envisage themselves on some sort of crusade, with the object of converting us bloody heathen atheist detestable creatures to the true light? :P I mean I often wonder what the result would be if I went to church this Sunday, and stood up the back shouting/preaching about how the universe is the ultimate free lunch and arose from nothing, and any need for any magical spaghetti monster was simply superfluous at best.:D The mind boggles!

 

I think that deep down they know what they are asserting as true is really just whistling in the dark. They try to engage in debate thinking the deceptions they use on themselves should work on everyone else...  

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