BELIEF

     Another blog, brought on by a continued dialogue by my sister. She keeps posting Mormon.org articles to me. Don’t really care that much, kinda funny actually, but the rhetoric makes me think on belief and belief systems.

     The assertations by the religious, particularily on the site Mormon.org, make me think of the compartmentilzation and mental gymnastics one has to ascribe to in order to make “belief” into something beyond what it is. I mean, something accepted as true, especially a particular tenet accepted by a group of persons. You have to hold a premise to be true, (without a rational explanation) a given, to accept a (religious) belief. No reason, no logic, no thinking required.

     “I KNOW ________ is true (insert belief) because ____________ (insert your brand of ‘proof’, usually circular reasoning). Then assert this proof by individual and sometimes conflicting anecdotal testimony that does not equate to any evidence for supernatural forces. Belief squared to the 10th power.

     I’m not knocking belief, per se, as in I belive that Bobbie (a cat I know) seems to enjoy my company over most others she comes into contact with. Could be because I feed her, groom her, water her, and take the time to play with her and whatnot, but I like to believe she likes me best. Proof? Because she likes me. My testimony on that is she always comes up to me and rubs against me and purrs. With the caveat that it is always at her instigation, but that is nit-picking.

     See, now that was just kinda silly, I know. However, belief probably did help in the evolutionary scheme of the human race but at present, to me it seems almost vestigial, this belief in a higher authority. As more and more evidence is brought to bear upon that which was once subscribed to “the god(s)”, i.e., weather, mental illness, disease, physics, etc., the need for a god keeps receding expotentially. The box just gets keeps getting smaller and smaller, while our understanding of the world is filled with reason and logic, through scientific enquiry, without a supernatural being needed for explanations of how the world works. Or to put it another way, a quote from one of my heroes, Neil Degrasse Tyson, who says it much better than I can.

     “God is an ever-receding pocket of scientific ignorance”. Well stated, Neil.

     When we are able to look at our “beliefs” straight on, no blinking, no turning away, and apply the same logic and reasoning we do to other matters we confront on a daily basis, I think, as a species, we will grow, mature, and become something better. (My belief, anyway).

     As always, peace. Be well, and be excellent to each other.

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Replies to This Discussion

Regarding your last paragraph, I sincerely hope you are right.

So do I, Lillie. So do I.

I have attempted to rid my speech of the word "believe," and not just because it was a Romney-Ryan campaign slogan.  The minute you start believing in something you admit you know nothing about it.  The more the religious believe, the less valid their argument.  Merely believing at all is dangerous enough: you quit questioning things. You make assumptions that are completely devoid of scientific or historical proof.  For example, Moses.  Many do not know he was fictitious, that there is no historical record of him whatsoever.  Belief is laziness personified.  When you believe, you acquit yourself without putting anything to the demands of proof. Some believe in God because they know we cannot refute him.  That they cannot prove Him seems to make no difference.

I agree, James. I try not to use the word myself. I say "I accept this proposition" or "I accept this fact" when asked if I believe. No, I don't believe. Non-belief requires alot more from me. It requires me to research a subject, studying both the pro/con of it. It requires me to be skeptical, to (horror) THINK. To use reason, apply some semblence of logic. Try not to accept something at face value, even when published by someone I truly respect. So, no, I don't believe.

The people at the site my sister keeps sending to me go from "we belive the church, Joseph Smith, etc." to "I KNOW (?) this to be true", a personal testimony. What a disconnect. They seem to believe harder and stronger than most others, all without proof.

 

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