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Featured A Person Believes in Science by Faith if...

Discussion in 'Science and Religion' started by KerimF, Jun 12, 2021.

  1. KerimF

    KerimF Active Member

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    A mature person believes in science by faith, much like a believer in a god’s law does, anytime he cannot trust his own observations/experiences and logical reasoning more than of anyone else, period :)
     
  2. Unveiled Artist

    Unveiled Artist Shrugs. I tried.

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    Could you unpack that more?
     
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  3. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    I have faith that this post will find its way to this thread by the magic of science
     
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  4. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    We have faith in all sorts of things, all the time, science included.

    But that does not imply the basis of that faith is always the same. The basis of faith in science is that science is rooted in objective observation of nature. We have faith in a theory because it has been put to the test by observation and found to work.

    This is not true of faith in religion.

    So I don't agree the one is much like the other, save in the sense that in both cases we take on trust what we are told by someone else, rather than experiencing it for ourselves directly.
     
    #4 exchemist, Jun 12, 2021
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  5. Windwalker

    Windwalker Veteran Member
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    False. Period. :)

    You are conflating trustworthiness based upon proven track records, with religious faith. These are not the same things. Faith in the Divine, is based upon an intuition, despite a lack of immediate evidence to support it. That is stated as such in scripture. "The substance of things not seen, the evidence of things hoped for."

    Not so with science. One does not approach science in this way, or at least should not. Rather with science you look at the data, the tests, you have others verify the tests, and then this increases the trustworthiness of it, it's reliability. "I trust that Joe knows what he is doing, because he always gets my car fixed and he has proven knowledge." That is not based upon trusting hope. That is based upon hard evidence.

    Faith in God is based upon the heart, not reason. These are not comparable. And those who see God in the same way they see science, are mistaken about both.
     
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  6. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    ".. he cannot trust his own observations/experiences and logical reasoning more than of anyone else, .." Science uses many more precise instruments and these findings are then analyzed in great detail. It will be illogical not to use the findings of science. Does our observation show that our fingers are made up of atoms and molecules? Human observation is very limited.
     
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  7. Polymath257

    Polymath257 Think & Care
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    There is *confidence* in the experts, yes. That is different than faith, though.

    The question then becomes whether those experts can know what they claim to know.

    In the case of scientists, they can: they have testable theories and repeatable results judged by other educated experts in the field.

    In the case of religion, they cannot: they cannot know there is a God, they cannot know what the God wants if such exists, they cannot know that their specific religious text is valid, etc. In other words, they can be experts about what other people have said, but that does not make them experts on religion itself.

    So, which field has experts that have access to the knowledge they claim?

    Faith says that we should trust those claiming to be experts that have no way of knowing what they claim. Confidence says we should trust the experts that *do* have a way of knowing what they claim.

    The difference, to me, is clear.
     
    #7 Polymath257, Jun 12, 2021
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  8. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    A thread like this belongs in a debate area as it makes claims that obviously a lot of people will disagree with. We take this seriously as it complicates moderation. Debates aren't like conversations where everybody tosses in a coin.
     
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  9. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    And it's not "interfaith" as most understand that word.
     
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  10. AlexanderG

    AlexanderG Active Member

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    As others have stated
    As others have stated, you're equivocating between different usages of "faith." In fact, science and faith are opposite and contradictory epistemologies.

    Science uses "faith" in so much as it provides a tentative confidence level based on objective, reliable, repeatable observations and the successful predictive power of conceptual models for reality.

    Faith, for most people, is the willingness to believe a claim despite the lack of objective, reliable, repeatable observations, or even despite direct observations that contradict the claim in question. By those standards, literally any claim could be believed on the basis of faith.

    Lastly, the scientific method recognizes that we humans do have biases, flaws in reasoning, cognitive blind spots, etc, and it does everything it can to prevent these issues from impacting scientific data. Double blind experiments, peer review, and a culture encouraging the falsification of others' studies are some examples of this. By contrast, religious "scholarship" contrast has no such guard rails. In fact, most religious universities require their professors to sign a "statement of faith," which allows the school to fire them if they publish any findings that are contrary to a pre-determined set of conclusions.
     
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  11. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    ***mod: thread moved from Interfaith to Religious Debates -> Science and Religion ***
     
  12. Yazata

    Yazata Active Member

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    I'm not convinced that it's mature to do so. But yes, I agree that many (typically laypeople) treat science as their authority in much the same way that a certain kind of religious person treats tradition or scripture. It's growing increasingly common in our day and age.

    If "scientists say...", then it's the truth as far as these people are concerned. Anyone who disagrees or even questions is to be shouted down, ridiculed and shunned.

    The difficulty, as I see it, is that this typically ignores or otherwise dismisses controversies among scientists, who often don't speak with one single voice. There's a variety of opinion about many questions among scientists. So it's very easy to choose those scientists who support an individual's preexisting conclusions and to parade them as rhetorical authorities. (In the 'social sciences' particularly, there's a "study" that supports almost any conclusion.)

    And even more fundamentally, is the fact that this kind of attitude typically ignores or otherwise dismisses the many deeper philosophical questions about the foundations of science and scientific practice. That's especially true when scientists slide over into being metaphysicians and epistemologists, laying down what's supposedly the truth about knowledge, reason and ultimate reality.

    I deeply distrust these tendencies. (That's probably the agnostic in me speaking, but it's another place where agnostics differ from atheists.) There's something faintly medieval and even authoritarian about the growing prevalence of arguments from authority at the expense of individuals thinking for themselves and making their own decisions.
     
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  13. KerimF

    KerimF Active Member

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    Sorry... unpacking it in which respect?
    Isn't it simple and clear? But if it isn't so, then it is surely my bad English :(
     
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  14. KerimF

    KerimF Active Member

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    Magic of science?! This is new to me!
     
  15. QuestioningMind

    QuestioningMind Well-Known Member

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    Depends on how you are defining faith. Are you equating faith with belief without evidence. Or are you equating faith with simple trust?
     
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  16. Hermit Philosopher

    Hermit Philosopher Selflessly here for you

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    Spontaneously, I was going to agree with them being quite different. But picking the below apart, may suggest elsewise:

    There is no such thing as “objective observation”. We experience things from the perspective of human beings. This is obvious but not trivial because it reminds us that what we call scientific objectivity is actually more a matter of consensus.

    We like to think that science evolves because we learn more, but the reason we do so is because our so called “objective” perspective [on reality] changes and, as we collectively redefine reality, new aspects become perceivable and understood in new light.

    Finally, just like with science, many acquire faith in their spiritual path because when they practice it, it results in what they had expected. Trouble is that the payoffs of humility, for example, are invisible to the arrogant.
     
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  17. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    It's called sarcasm, I'm sure you've heard if it
     
  18. KerimF

    KerimF Active Member

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    I wish you are right. But, let us be realistic. Whenever someone believes/trusts another person blindly (that is... more than himself) concerning an idea (he accepted), scientific or else, he would be a believer by faith not by mind.

    Yous said:
    "We have faith in a theory because it has been put to the test by observation and found to work."

    It has been put to the test by whom?!
    If this has been done by you, in one way or another (even indirectly by using 'your' logical reasoning, for example), your belief would be based on reason, not faith.
     
  19. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    In fact, when I wrote the quoted passage, it crossed my mind as to whether I should be exact and talk in terms of reproducible observations, or whether that might be tech-speak and I should just say objective. I opted for the latter on grounds of clarity, but you have picked me up on it.;)

    I agree nothing can be 100% objective, not least because mankind itself shares a certain view of things - humanity itself may have some inbuilt biases. .However science gets as close as it can to objectivity by requiring reproducible observation of nature. This eliminates the bias of the individual observer and goes a long way towards catching simple errors. What is observed is something that becomes agreed upon.
     
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  20. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    That's the point. We trust a theory because we have read, in a source we trust, that more than one person we trust, in more than one location or using more than one technique, agree on observations that confirm the predictions of the theory. That involves faith. But it is faith based on tests the theory has passed - so long as we are right to trust our sources and the people making the observations. There is a particular, rigorous process followed in science, to make sure that theories are solidly founded on what nature tells us.

    This does not apply to the theories of religion.
     
    #20 exchemist, Jun 12, 2021
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2021
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