Christianity, science and faith

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nobspeople
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Christianity, science and faith

Post #1

Post by nobspeople »

In a recent thread about christianity and science, the idea of faith came up and persisted for a bit.
It made me curious how faith plays into the idea of science.

For discussion:
Do people have to have faith in science like they have to have faith in their religion?
Surely, humanity doesn't know everything about everything, so faith is needed in some fashion. But is faith in science the same type of faith in religion?
Or is 'faith faith' - there are no different types?
Have a great, potentially godless, day!

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Re: Christianity, science and faith

Post #21

Post by nobspeople »

Miles wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 3:31 pm
nobspeople wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 9:12 am
Miles wrote: Thu Jan 20, 2022 12:49 am ,


In as much as there's nothing that can't be taken on faith---I can have just as much faith that a blue fairy will swoop down and leave wads of cash at my front door tomorrow morning as I can have faith that Jesus will save me from Hell---faith comes out as a pretty hollow concept. It has no more chance of being true as being false, making it utterly useless, unless, that is, one chooses to ignore its fictitious nature and uses it as a security blanket to huddle with (think Linus Van Pelt here). So when it's asked:

"Surely, humanity doesn't know everything about everything, so faith is needed in some fashion."

the answer is: No, it is not. The only need faith satisfies is hopeful expectations, and, like my blue fairy, hopeful expectations may or may not be reasonable or even possible. Keep in mind faith's weakness, and remember that "I don't know" is a far more honest and less misleading response than to hold a foolish idea as true because you have faith that it's so. Faith has never made anything true, or necessarily led to a truth no matter how fervently it's held.

As Matt Dillahunty has said, "faith is the excuse people give for believing something when they don't have evidence.” So no, people should not have faith in science, ever; particularly like the faith they in their religion. They should have trust in science predicated on its proven methodology to produce sound explanations.


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A very good point to make! I'd have to disagree in that 'no faith is not needed' concept, as you said "The only need faith satisfies is hopeful expectations". For some, that's plenty!
But what I was meaning in this thread is as the above example:
No one was around to see the earth created, even though people know it was.
There's evidence to point to this or that, but ultimately, there's some sort of faith that's required to believe in a specific position - be it a creation from a deity, by nature itself or some other way.
Humans know (without getting into philosophical discussions of what is 'know' and what is 'reality') for sure the earth was created, but they don't know the specific means.
If that makes sense.
I'm not saying that where bolstering hope is desired, faith can't be of assistance, only that it's a hope based on a false premise: that faith strengthens the likelihood that its object is true. In religion faith invariably converts into trust, and considering the lack of evidence surrounding it, it's a unfounded trust.

I believe it's far more honest and possibly fruitful to hold an "I don't know" position than to construct a self-satisfying faith, which, lacking convincing evidence, nonetheless asserts a supposed truth. If there was convincing evidence for X then faith would be superfluous; there would be knowledge: "I know that . . . ."



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Absolutely agree. I'm always saying 'I don't know' about things because, well, that's the truth. I think it more people did that instead of making something up, saying 'because god', or the like, they'd get much more respect.
But that's just my 2¢
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Re: Christianity, science and faith

Post #22

Post by Sherlock Holmes »

Tcg wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:14 am [Replying to nobspeople in post #1]

I think with science the word would be trust not faith. For instance, I trust that fresh water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, but I've never tested that. What reason would one have to report that falsely? I have however seen ice form on the tops of streams when it is cold out. I've never seen that happen on a hot summer day.
A better term for that is "believe", effectively choosing to regard an unproven proposition as true.
Tcg wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:14 am Faith that Jesus rose from the dead for instance is a whole different deal. By most accounts it was a supernatural event. How can that be measured?
By writing an account of it at around the time it was observed.
Tcg wrote: Fri Jan 21, 2022 3:14 am How can that be experienced? We don't have any dead people posting on this forum. Jesus certainly hasn't logged on. I can however take a thermometer and measure the temperature of ice. Faith is required when one wants to accept that which can't be shown to be true.
No claims about the natural world can be "shown to be true", only believed to be true given a set of axioms (which as I'm sure you know are themselves, unproven propositions).
When one has eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

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Re: Christianity, science and faith

Post #23

Post by bjs1 »

[Replying to Mikronman in post #9]

If were to start with your definition that faith pertains solely to the supernatural, then my definition would indeed be too vague. The problem in this case is that vaguer definition is more accurate. Faith is often applied to the supernatural. However, faith is not limited to the supernatural, and certainly not to something as simple as ghosts.

The word faith means, “strong belief or trust in someone or something.” A person can have faith in God, or faith in another person, or faith in the dollar, or faith in the government. In each case faith is the correct word to use. Limiting faith to the supernatural is simply inaccurate.
Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.
-Charles Darwin

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