Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Problem with Faith

The problem with faiths, all faiths, including all of the world's religions and often including various forms of secularism to include science, comes when belief becomes a substitute for knowledge.
This would not be a problem except when "people of faith" display a complete lack of trust in the god, gods or goddesses they say they believe in. They often act as though their chosen divinity has very little power and needs their help and the help of civil law.
Sadly, faith often seems to lack any true faith or trust in God. Faith seems to recognize faith is not knowledge and fears knowledge has the potential to knock down the house of cards of the carefully constructed faith system, which is its dogma. In other words, you must believe this or that they say you must believe in while knowing full well they don't know what is true.
Belief is always a substitute for knowledge. It can be a useful tool to gain knowledge.
Science at its best does recognize that what it believes is true today could be proven false tomorrow and is willing to change what it believes is true when what it believed was true is proven false.
On the other hand, religions have a hard time when it comes to changing what they believe even when what they believe is proven to be false. An obvious example comes to mind when the Catholic Church found itself forced to accept the fact that the Earth travels around the Sun and not the other way around.
Looking back at those times, you wonder why it was ever such a big deal. The only answer it seems to me is the basic sin of human pride. How we hate to be proven wrong! But this wouldn't be a problem if we actually had faith (trusted) in God and were not out to prove how smart we are about things we actually don't know for certain.
You might ask, "Is faith a hold-over from a more primitive time, a stick wielded by cynical politicians? Or is it a force for awakening and enriching our lives?"
I would answer by saying it often is both, one in the same at the same time. At its best, it is a trust in the workings of creation without placing any demands upon the One you believe is the Creator.

No comments:

Post a Comment