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January 30, 2009

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Since "faith" is belief that is not based on proof, anyone using that word in their statements could'nt possibly be lying! So yeah, saying faith most certainly "does change anything".

DJ, I think I see what you're getting at, but I still disagree with you. Here's why.

You seem to be looking upon faith as a sort of childlike innocence. A four year old says, "Fairies live in that hole in the tree." She really believes it. Or at least, she almost really believes it (if you seriously interrogated her, she might well end up saying, "Oh, I know they aren't really there, but I like to think they are.")

Adults, though, need to be held to a higher standard -- since we're able to assess the validity of beliefs, whether there is evidence for them.

When a preacher says, "Jesus died on the cross for our sins; you must believe this to be saved," he isn't talking like a child. Rather, he is putting forth as gospel truth something that he doesn't know to be true.

If you interrogated the preacher about the foundation of his belief, likely he'd up saying, "It comes down to faith."

Well, fine. This is just like what I said in my post: I don't know how to fix cars, yet I tell people that I can. That would be a lie. If you don't know that something is true, and you affirm that it is, I call that a lie.

My big problem with religion isn't that people have faith in things there is no evidence for. We all do that. But religion goes a step further and asserts that other people should also believe in stuff for which there's no evidence.

Christians say, "The soul enters a embryo at conception, so abortion should be illegal." That's a lie, because there's no evidence of this, just as there's no evidence that Jesus saves souls from hellfire. If someone said, "Personally, I believe...", this would be different. I'd call that a misguided hypothesis rather than a lie.

You seem to be pointing toward the notion of a "noble lie." Namely, a lie that people accept because it has supposedly positive consequences (no fear of death! I'll be with God forever!). See:
http://www.positiveliberty.com/2007/07/open-society-vi-on-religion-as-a-noble-lie.html

Here's more on Noble Lie:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noble_lie

I pretty much agree with a statement by Irving Kristol in the Wikipedia article:

"There are different kinds of truths for different kinds of people. There are truths appropriate for children; truths that are appropriate for students; truths that are appropriate for educated adults; and truths that are appropriate for highly educated adults, and the notion that there should be one set of truths available to everyone is a modern democratic fallacy. It doesn't work."

OK, probably true. But the problem is that religion treats even educated adults like children. We all need to grow up, and realize the difference between fairies in a tree and shared reality.

Put away childish things...doesn't the Bible say this? To my mind, that means the Bible and every other holy book that preaches lies.


Brian said

"The only true statement about God or ultimate reality is...I don't know."

No - You can also say "this is my experience"

Which is where you lose everyone (almost).

And also why it's forbidden in RS to talk about inner experiences - because no ever had one and the lie would be exposed.

Not even the guru ever uttered a single one worth noted down about cosmic consiousness.

Of course they use the term CC. They have a entire cosmic fantasy to ascribe to.

Cyfer says - "No - You can also say "this is my experience" Which is where you lose everyone (almost)."

-- If a person says they don't know - how would another know they are telling the truth? If a person says they do know - how would another know they are telling the truth?

Cyfer says - "And also why it's forbidden in RS to talk about inner experiences - because no ever had one and the lie would be exposed."

-- I disagree. How would anyone know to trust what another says except through one's own experience? They can't actually. Trust me, I know. :) The whole concept of establishing trust has been arduous in this world. This is why it is so 'important' in civilization to establish a common paradigm or concensus reality. If we cannot agree on a common understanding, there is simply mis-understanding and poor communication (i.e. no community). RSSB simply establishes its own rules of community. The stated reason that RSSB followers are forbidden is said to be because it builds ego to do so.

Cyfer says: "Of course they use the term CC. They have a entire cosmic fantasy to ascribe to."

-- There is indeed a great deal of fantasy in these common belief systems. RSSB is no different. Otherwise we would all be in Sach Khand (realm of truth).

I was going to write on this very same topic today! But you've covered it so well, I don't have to. I'll simply invite my readers to come over here to read this post for themselves.

Dear Jayme,

"[C]ommon understanding[s]" are often false understandings.

Robert Paul Howard

I meant to say they "don't " use the term ' cosmic consiousness", they use some fantasy.. maybe salgam ri fanatasy. If that's your religion that's what you'll see, maybe. The turning of the shakti inward, and the turning of the shakti outward. That's the thing.

We have to share our experiences and not be egotistical. If it is warrented. If the experience has power.

If a scientist never shared the results of his findings in the labortory with other scientist, what would be learned ? Where is the science ?

Hi Robert Paul Howard

Yes.

In general, collective or individual concepts cannot be whole.

Hi Cyfer,

I think I agree to a great extent.

I don't know the term 'salgam ri.' If I understand the term shakti correctly, turning the shakti inward is considered good and turning it outward is considered bad.

Going 'inward' or 'outward' are really just concepts as are 'good' and 'bad.' Inherent in creation is its own narcissistic fantasy. Patterns unfold through shared experiences or beliefs which are necessarily incomplete, apart from the whole. Nothing is ultimately learned (God is brainless :) and science is just another unfolding pattern that came into being. All the patterns are pretty cool but only temporary.

I do favor the benefits of science and social discourse. I think you are correct that we must become more capable of sharing less ego encumbered experiences. The consequence of ego is conflict (inward and outward). Seeing through the ego, beyond the lie at the center is a good ideal - even if seemingly impractical.

Your article is enlightening. Thank you. I have written a little:


Implications of this article:

Faith is a vice, not a virtue.
It is a fundamental vice for humanity because it is a wrong method to find reality.
The fundamental flaw of faith-based religions is that they teach a fundamental vice as a fundamental virtue.

Implications of this article on Judaism and Christianity:

Judaism has the fundamental error of praising the faith of Abraham. Abraham's "faith" in God resulted in attempted murder of his own son. Abraham's "faith" ought to be condemned, not praised.

Christianity has the fundamental error of condemning Thomas. Thomas disblieved in Jesus' resurrection and demanded evidence. That is science: prove or disprove by evidence. That is the correct way to find out truth. In order to promote a faith to its readers who did not have chance to see Jesus' body, the Gospel of John put these words in Jesus' mouth: "Because you [Thomas] have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed." (20:29, NASV) Thomas was condemned. By condemning Thomas, the Gospel condemned science. Christianity suspects science ever since. Science and faith are opposite methods of finding out truth (by evidence vs without evidence). The foundation of science is the very lack of faith. The two cannot be reconciled.

you are an intolerant liberal asshole....oh I guess that probably goes without saying heh?Go to China Or Russiaor join the army of the Hittaites oh very limp one

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