Faith is Greater than Reason
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11-01-2012, 01:57 PM
 
Lightbulb Faith is Greater than Reason
It is one thing to believe that which is right in front of you. I believe the sky is blue. I believe there are alligators in the lake next to my house. I believe gravity exists. There is no choice but to believe these things, and it is a very natural reaction to make reasonable judgments based on such knowledge that is so obvious to me.

If I go swimming in the lake, I might lose a foot. If I drop a water balloon off the Sears Tower in Chicago, it will make a big splash in the end. That's normal human reasoning based on direct observations connected with previous experience or the acquired knowledge of what has happened in the past (e.g., others have been bit by alligators in similar lakes).

But this is not the highest level of human mental functioning anymore than the peristalsis that leads to a good poop is a victory of human achievement. We observe and reason by reflex. Faith on the other hand requires will.

When we choose to believe, no matter what is presented to us, we are not only using our rational powers (because we reason that we are not being rational) but we also incorporate our will so that the entire process is more demanding than mere reasoning. It’s actually something that is very difficult to do.

If one is sick, and they choose to believe they have been healed even when they are still in pain or the symptoms persist, or if one simply chooses to have confidence in a situation even though there is only a 50/50 chance they will prevail, this takes more mental capability than simply being rational.

And I’m not talking about delusions here. A deluded person is still on the level of reasoning because they are sure their delusion is true. A deluded person may think they are protected against alligators by space aliens. That’s not faith. Such a person is using rational thinking when they go swimming in the lake. They’re wrong, of course, but they think they’re right; so, that’s not faith.

Because faith uses rationality as its stepping stone and then goes further through the use of will, it is obviously a greater use of human mental capabilities. And couldn't it be said that the use of will is more godlike than the use of rationality? Thus if there is a God, it may well be the case that we grow closer to Him via the use of faith.
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11-01-2012, 02:06 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
It looks like you put a lot of thought into this. Although it looks like swiss cheese to me, I'm gonna take some time to try to think it through from both my perspective AND yours. My initial thought is that you are saying reason is a stepping stone to faith, but your explination sounds more like, "faith is the ability to discard reason all together." If that is the case, then faith is easy. Cover thine eyes, plug thine ears, and ye shall find the Lord.

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11-01-2012, 02:14 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
Faith is not equal to trust
Faith does not use rationality as its stepping stone. Trust does to a degree though. I don't have faith that my office mate won't steal my stuff, I trust that he won't steal it based on evidence, reason and logic.
belief is not equal to knowledge based on evidence

“Science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.”
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11-01-2012, 02:18 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
(11-01-2012 01:57 PM)Egor Wrote:  We observe and reason by reflex.

True...



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11-01-2012, 02:18 PM (This post was last modified: 11-01-2012 02:19 PM by Chas.)
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
(11-01-2012 01:57 PM)Egor Wrote:  When we choose to believe, no matter what is presented to us, we are not only using our rational powers (because we reason that we are not being rational) but we also incorporate our will so that the entire process is more demanding than mere reasoning. It’s actually something that is very difficult to do.

This is one of the silliest arguments for faith. Choosing to believe regardless of evidence is an abdication of reason. How can that possibly be seen as good?

Cutting off my own foot is difficult; that doesn't make it desirable or praiseworthy.
(11-01-2012 02:18 PM)The_observer Wrote:  
(11-01-2012 01:57 PM)Egor Wrote:  We observe and reason by reflex.

True...



How old do you guess the lady in the picture below?

[Image: youngladyoldlady.gif]

Which lady?

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11-01-2012, 02:21 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
I struggle to see your point. You are praising the act of believing without evidence because it takes more effort and mental willpower? Of course it does. Your brain is trying to correct itself and you are resisting it. If you convince yourself that the sky is actually blue because it's a floating ocean, your brain will reject this idea. Disregarding logic and forcing your brain to believe isn't a virtue, it's the act of an insane person.

And why is the person who thinks he's protected by aliens "deluded" and the person who thinks he's protected by an invisible man in the clouds "rational?" Where's the logical separation there?

I believe that gravity is caused by invisible pixies holding us to the earth. I know science tells us otherwise, but I have faith and so I am the more mentally capable than the scientists.

"Faith is greater than reason." On the logic scale, faith and reason aren't battling it out for position... faith is the very antithesis of reason.

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11-01-2012, 02:36 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
(11-01-2012 01:57 PM)Egor Wrote:  And I’m not talking about delusions here. A deluded person is still on the level of reasoning because they are sure their delusion is true. A deluded person may think they are protected against alligators by space aliens. That’s not faith. Such a person is using rational thinking when they go swimming in the lake. They’re wrong, of course, but they think they’re right; so, that’s not faith.
Faith is *not* being sure of yourself but still acting as if you were, otherwise it is delusion?

Quote:Because faith uses rationality as its stepping stone and then goes further through the use of will, it is obviously a greater use of human mental capabilities. And couldn't it be said that the use of will is more godlike than the use of rationality? Thus if there is a God, it may well be the case that we grow closer to Him via the use of faith.
So faith has a virtue because you're overcoming your natural inclination to call bullshit... using your 'reason is as natural as taking a shit' analogy, this is like saying that holding your asshole shut is a desirable thing.

Also... I notice the courtesy extended to us of "if there is a God". I take it that you yourself are as certain as ever?
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11-01-2012, 02:38 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
And your point is?
If it's 'faith is greater than reason',then you failed at proving it.

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11-01-2012, 02:42 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
(11-01-2012 02:36 PM)morondog Wrote:  Thus if there is a God, it may well be the case that we grow closer to Him via the use of faith.

Can't leave this alone. If there is a God, we grow closer to him by shutting down our brains?

Yep, I agree Big Grin *If* God as described in the Bible does exist, then the *only* way I'll ever get anywhere near him is through severe head trauma.
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11-01-2012, 02:48 PM
RE: Faith is Greater than Reason
Faith is greater than reason, yet you try to use reason to show it? Huh

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