Reasoned faith? Please explain
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17-12-2013, 02:27 AM
Reasoned faith? Please explain
(11-12-2013 04:20 PM)Yasmin Wrote:  As someone who has come to faith using reason and questioning I feel a bit insulted when people try to say 'teach children to think and they'll reject faith.' Blind and unreasoned atheism is as dangerous as blind and unreasoned faith...

Hey Yasmin, I found this and couldn't help myself. I didn't know if I should go straight to PM or make a whole thread. I decided on a thread so like minded people can explain the logic and reason that some of us don't seem to understand. This isn't meant to be a personal attack or anything like that. I'm way too cool for that.

I'll start by defining faith from the bible which is also the general way in which it is used by theists. " Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen" - Hebrews 11:1. "Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear" - Hebrews 11:3

Verse 3 is an example of the application of faith. There is no critical analysis of subject matter. It's a two stage system of input-output with no process stage in the middle. You say that you've come to faith with "reason and questioning", but isn't that inherently contradictory? Faith is simply input-output. Questioning is the missing process stage. Your statement implies that through logic and reason you have settled on a position void of logic and reason. To me this points to a system that had no logic or reason in the first place. It's like my own semen having someone elses DNA and me still saying it's mine. It's an intellectually bankrupt statement or a statement with unfathomable genius.

8000 years before Jesus, the Egyptian god Horus said, "I am the way, the truth, the life."
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17-12-2013, 02:32 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
Oxymoron.


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17-12-2013, 04:14 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
There is no such thing as reasoned faith.
Faith by definition is believing in something without any good reason to, without any evidence, without any justification.
Now you can have faith also for bad reasons, for correlations that you think make sense in your own mind, for coincidences, for having some kind of insight into a larger picture of the world that you think other people just can't see.
Asking a lot of questions and coming up with the wrong answers, while believing that they are the right answers is simple delusion.
When you stack delusion on top of delusion, it can appear to be mounting evidence that you feel justifies your faith, but in the end, you are still believing in something without any good reason to do so and still absent evidence.

If you kill someone on the bus and your reasons are because you know what he was thinking as he glanced your way and smiled.
Without ever seeing this person before you have faith that you did the right thing.
You justify it in your own mind by concocting all kinds of connections and correlations that have no basis in reason and logic.
He was wearing a flannel shirt and some of the pictures of serial killers you've seen have them in flannel shirts.
His hair was parted on the left side which means his mind is unbalanced.
Looking at me was his way of letting me know that I was his next target.
His shoes were shined way too much and his appearance seemed to detailed.
"Just research his life and I"m sure you will find a woman tied up in a closet somewhere. Why are you arresting me" ?

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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17-12-2013, 07:48 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
(11-12-2013 04:20 PM)Yasmin Wrote:  As someone who has come to faith using reason and questioning I feel a bit insulted when people try to say 'teach children to think and they'll reject faith.' Blind and unreasoned atheism is as dangerous as blind and unreasoned faith...

I'll just respond directly to Yasmin's statement in this thread:

I agree with the portion of your statement where you say that blind atheism is as bad as blind faith, in that both are unreasoned viewpoints that lack critical thinking. I do need you to define "reasoned faith", though.

From what I've seen (both as a Christian and an atheist), a theist can start with an assumption that God exists, and by being sufficiently credulous and vague, be able to set up a framework to render it immune to scrutiny. I wouldn't call that "reasoned", though. While God of the Gaps isn't wrong per se, it's not particularly reasoned, either.

Or, do you have a different definition of "reasoned faith" than what I'm going on? I'm curious what you mean.
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17-12-2013, 08:48 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
(11-12-2013 04:20 PM)Yasmin Wrote:  As someone who has come to faith using reason and questioning I feel a bit insulted when people try to say 'teach children to think and they'll reject faith.' Blind and unreasoned atheism is as dangerous as blind and unreasoned faith...

I can see where Yasmin is coming from. There are intelligent theists, and have put much time into "reasoning" out their ideologies. And, if you have only a basic understanding (or misunderstanding) of science, then these reasonings can seem very logical. Thus, you have logical faith or reasoned faith. To us atheists, it is a ridiculous claim based on our understanding of the world.

So saying 'teach children to think and they'll reject faith,' is insulting. This is insinuating that theists don't think.

I would re-word it by saying 'teach children to think scientifically/in a scientific manner and they'll most likely reject faith.
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17-12-2013, 09:02 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
The "god of the gaps" argument is the believer's appeal to god as an explanation for whatever phenomenon we cannot explain scientifically. For example, if the scientific understanding of the day cannot explain lightning bolts, the believer will say "god did it".Once we can scientifically explain the mechanism behind lightning, the believer will move on to another phenomenon and attribute god as the cause of that phenomenon.
Faith IS the delusion, belief without evidence. Faith is pretending to know things that you dont know. To say "I have faith in god" really means "I pretend to know things I don't know about god"....THINK about it, you dont know, you HOPE. Faith is an epistemology. It's a method and process people use to understand reality. Faith-based claims are knowledge claims. For example, "I have faith that jesus christ will heal my sickness because it says so in Luke" is a knowledge claim. The utterer of this statement is asserting jesus will heal her. Those who make faith claims are professing to know something about the external world. For example, when someone says "jesus walked on water" (matthew 14:22-33), that person is claiming TO KNOW there was an historical figure names jesus and that he, unaided by technology, literally walked across the surface of the water. This is a knowledge claim...an objective statement of fact.

Your religious beliefs typically depend on the community in which you were raised or lived. The spiritual experiences of people in ancient greece, medieval japan or 21st century saudia arabia do not lead to belief in christianity. It seems, therefore, that religious belief very likely tracks not truth but social conditioning.

Faith is a failed epistemology. Showing why faith fails has been done before and done well. (Bering 2011, Harris 2004, Loftus 2010, 2013, McCormick 2012, Schick & Vaughn 2008, Shermer 1997, 2011, Smith 1979, STenger & Barker 2012, Torres 2012, Wade 2009 etc)

If a belief is based on insufficient evidence, than any further conclusion drawn from the belief will at best be of questionable value. This can not point one to the path of truth. Here are five points believers/non believers should be able to agree upon.

1) There are different faith traditions.
2) Different faith traditions make different truth claims.
3) The truth claims of some faith traditions contradict the truth claims of other faith traditions. For example, Muslims believe muhammad (570-632) was the last prophet (Sura 33:40). Mormons believe Joseph Smith (1805-1844), who lived after muhammad was a prophet.
4) It cannot both be the case that muhammad was the last prophet, and someone who lived after him was also a prophet.
5) Therefore: At LEAST one of these claims must be false....perhaps both....

it is impossible to figure out which of these claims is incorrect if the tool one uses is faith. As a tool, as an epistemology, as a method of reasoning, as a process for knowing the world, faith cannot adjudicate between competing claims. The ONLY way to figure out which claims about the world are likely true, and which are likely false, is through reason and evidence. There is no other way.....yet

Playing semantics with the word faith is a losing battle. A delusion is a delusion no matter how politically correct you word it.

A delusion is a belief held with strong conviction despite superior evidence to the contrary.
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17-12-2013, 09:10 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
I think it is worth pointing out that the word "reason" can have a broad range of meaning to different folks, based on their experiences and unfortunately -presuppositions. It is apparent when I was listening to an interview with our friend Comfort (I know why...why!). He just looks at everything as a painting that required a painter, so therefore see a bird - God did it; see an ocean - God did it. That is his reasoning process and it is all it takes to come to a conclusion. Suffering and disasters must be a result of sin - more reasoning on the part of a theist.

I guess the point is reasoning, logic, and cognitive thought do not need to accompany one another. Comfort even claims that if you apply the Scientific Method in analyzing the world around us, you can only come to the conclusion of ID. Crappy reasoning, and a bit of delusion, in my opinion.

“Truth does not demand belief. Scientists do not join hands every Sunday, singing, yes, gravity is real! I will have faith! I will be strong! I believe in my heart that what goes up, up, up, must come down, down, down. Amen! If they did, we would think they were pretty insecure about it.”
— Dan Barker —
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17-12-2013, 09:11 AM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
(17-12-2013 09:10 AM)Timber1025 Wrote:  I think it is worth pointing out that the word "reason" can have a broad range of meaning to different folks, based on their experiences and unfortunately -presuppositions. It is apparent when I was listening to an interview with our friend Comfort (I know why...why!). He just looks at everything as a painting that required a painter, so therefore see a bird - God did it; see an ocean - God did it. That is his reasoning process and it is all it takes to come to a conclusion. Suffering and disasters must be a result of sin - more reasoning on the part of a theist.

I guess the point is reasoning, logic, and cognitive thought do not need to accompany one another. Comfort even claims that if you apply the Scientific Method in analyzing the world around us, you can only come to the conclusion of ID. Crappy reasoning, and a bit of delusion, in my opinion.

I wholeheartedly agree
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18-12-2013, 09:21 PM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
What it means is that Yasmin woudn't know reason if it bit her on the ass.

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18-12-2013, 09:50 PM
RE: Reasoned faith? Please explain
I always thought it meant to have faith, but within reason.
I have faith in humanity but I still lock my doors at night.

"I don't have to have faith, I have experience." Joseph Campbell
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