Faith is the step taken to assert as true a claim that rests on no logical proof and has no material evidence. It is the foundation of religion. To be a religious believer is to have faith. Religions across the world elevate faith as an ideal, something to be pursued. The more faith you have the better.
My question as you may have guessed is, “Why faith?” Or maybe I could put it another way, “Faith? Really?”. I don’t understand this elevation of faith to an ideal. Logic and reason are the best tools we have to know how to best survive, how can abandoning them be an ideal? Faith seems so superfluous. Why should I ever use faith when I can use logic and reason and the scientific method to establish evidence for any claim? I don’t even understand the existence of faith, let alone how it can be lofted as an ideal.
Sometimes faith even trumps evidence and reason! How can this be?!? How can someone decide that faith in a claim with no evidence and faulty logic is better than to believe one with sound logic and that is based on supporting empirical evidence? How can religious people for example argue against evolution and its huge repository of evidence when their own ideas have neither? How can someone decide not to take science based medicine and opt for homeopathy? Why has faith been given so much credit?
Despite my inability to understand faith, I’m going to have to live with the fact that it is very present in the world I live in. And you know what, I don’t have a problem with people living faith based lives. Thats fine, people should be able to live whatever kind of life they want. Whatever kind of life they want, as long as they don’t hurt other people. Thats where faith really starts to irk me.
That said I’m gearing up to do a series on faith, here are my currently proposed topics, but I may be adding more:
- Why science isn’t a faith or ideology.
- Why Childhood Indoctrination is bad.
- Why science based medicine is best.
- The difference in meaning between faith in your friends and faith in a claim.