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Faith Belief and Truth. What Is The Difference?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by cardero, Jun 2, 2006.

  1. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    This is a conversation that was continued over in Who Claims Authority. Even though I am continuing this conversation with another RF member does not mean that other RF members cannot respond. In fact it is my intention that we make these guidelines clear for everyone so that we may engage in future discussions with our fellow members while all coming to a similar understanding about these terms.

    Not necessarily, if I was speaking to a non-religious person I could most likely be debating their faith in government or science. The point that I want to make understandably clear is that faith and/or belief does not equal truth.
    Actually I was encouraged to believe everything, there is nothing to lose in believing it is part of the freedom that goes with believing. It is when you start assigning importance to your beliefs that I believe disappointment can settle in. This might be referred to as a "betrayal of faith". Beliefs do not disappoint. They are either true or untrue. The fact is someone should have reasoned the possibilities of this belief (for example, that it may or may not be true) before placing any importance to this belief.

    GO ahead believe! BELIEVE EVERYTHING, I say! BUT…ACCEPT NOTHING! UNTIL YOU HAVE PROVEN THIS BELIEF TO BE A TRUTH OR AN UNTRUTH. This method works for everything. Try it. Try it on anything people tell you.

    HELLO IT’S ME: An Interview With GOD
    Chapter: Belief, Faith, Hope and Joy
    Pg: 166
    The same illustration was used in episode 301 of Star Trek entitled Spectre Of The Gun where at the end of the episode the crew was cornered, unarmed, by some of the most legendary gunman of the old west. It was Spock who eventually removed the power of their assailant’s bullets by removing the “belief” that they could harm the crew of the Enterprise. I’m not sure if the word faith was ever implied. I think the purpose of this was that if you did believe, the bullets would penetrate you and cause harm. This example could be used in anything. The belief gives you very few choices, either you believe or you do not. You will find out the truth of the matter when the circumstance has passed.

    Question: I will be honest with you. I have seen this episode of Star Trek before I was familiar with the account that you quoted in the Bible. Though I can support that the Star Trek episode was acted out, I cannot make the same claim to the story in the Bible. Should this fact impress upon (or a make a difference with) our faith? Does it matter to God where we get our faith, beliefs and truths from? Is it the message that is important or the Source?

    Question: A person comes to a bridge, the belief remains that either the bridge will support that person to cross safely to the other side or it will not. By your definition, what power does faith provide in determining if you cross safely or not?

    The biggest concern that I have with faith is that many people who are expressing it, are putting it fourth as if it was already established as truth. My question to you is, are you doing this?
     
  2. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    Generally speaking, there are at least two kinds of truth. In the first kind, conditional or practical truth, truth is a property of the relationship between a descriptor and the thing described. In the second kind, unconditional or absolute truth, I have no idea what truth is.

    Belief and faith are sometimes used synonymously by believers. At other times they designate different things. When they designate different things, it seems belief means a conviction based on evidence, while faith means a conviction held despite a lack of evidence.

    That's how understand those terms.
     
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  3. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Agreed. The mistake that many do is is equate faith to blind faith. Which has never been part of Christianity until latter times. Early Christianity and present Christian thinkers use proofs and subjective and objective proofs to come to their conclusions.

    Why would you think such a thing? You don't have to believe in God to attach meaning. Attaching meaning by default causes all of us to attach importance. Attaching meaning is something we all do. Remember that.

    Of course.

    Completely disagree...I tired it with pink elephants and it had absolutely no application to the real world.



    That would be an excellent analogy if it was based on something other then blind faith. Which seems to be the automatic thinking of many. Have Spock try that on some Christians. :D

    As I said, I disagree. God created a tangible and subjective world for a reason. If he wanted us to have blind faith. Then there would be no need to create a book, a church, or anything for that matter. Just your egoistic brain that can lead you toward God without error.


    The message is the ultimate worth of importance. The source is only there to cause clarity and a tangible source. But if you don't trust, it becomes harder.


    Faith is intended to build upon reason, not eliminate it.


    I'm not even understanding what you are saying here.:confused:
     
  4. lunamoth

    lunamoth Will to love

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    Faith does not conflict with reason but steps in where reason can't go:

    1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 2This is what the ancients were commended for. 3By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. 4By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead. (Hebrews 11)

    What we Believe is what we trust:

    16"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,[f] that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3)

    Truth is a state of being:

    14The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only,[d] who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1)

    6Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7If you really knew me, you would know[b] my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him." (John 14)

    15"If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be[c] in you. 18I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him." (John 14)

    lunamoth
     
  5. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Must spread Karma......
     
  6. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    Could you give examples for your descriptions Sunstone?

    I have come to understand that there are two truths as well; personal truths and universal truths.

    Personal truth: I am a male, mrscardero is not
    Universal Truth-The earth is round (or sort of oval)
     
  7. Ody

    Ody Well-Known Member

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    Truth can be backed up by data and what we can see. It is found through empirical reasoning, unlike religion which is created from feelings

    We feel that reality is to complex to just be a random event
    But we have no abilities to prove otherwise

    Faith/Belief has little or no logic to support it, after all no religious views are based on fact. This is coming from a theist people :p!
     
  8. MdmSzdWhtGuy

    MdmSzdWhtGuy Well-Known Member

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    I don't see where this works for you Cardero. If you are a Male, then, you are Male, that is simply true, universally. A better example might be, that you could state that you love Mrs. Cardero. I can chose to beleive you or not to beleive you, but only you know whether you truly love her or not. Therefore your feeling of love for the Mrs. might be a better example of a personal truth than you being male.

    The earth is round, or oval is a universal truth because it is testable, prove-able and available to be tested and proven by anyone who so chooses, and the same is true of your sex. You are a male, any Dr. could take a look at you and tell us that. For that matter, I could take a look at you and know that.

    From dictionary.com

    7 entries found for faith.

    faith [​IMG] ([FONT=verdana, sans-serif] P [/FONT]) Pronunciation Key (f[​IMG]th)
    n.
    1. Confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing.
    2. Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence. See Synonyms at belief. See Synonyms at trust.
    3. Loyalty to a person or thing; allegiance: keeping faith with one's supporters.
    4. often Faith Christianity. The theological virtue defined as secure belief in God and a trusting acceptance of God's will.
    5. The body of dogma of a religion: the Muslim faith.
    6. A set of principles or beliefs.
    I think when we discuss faith in a religious context most people are using the definition under number 2, above, closely aligned with number 4, above. For those using number 2 or 4 above as their definition of faith, then faith and truth don't necessarily have anything to do with one another. No matter how hard you believe that the Yankees won last years World Series, that doesn't change the FACT that the Red Sox won it.

    Just like no matter how much one might wish to have faith in a Noahic flood, that doesn't necessarily mean such an event happened. Or insert any other event or idea in for "Noahic flood" in the previous sentence, and it still works. You may have faith that an event occurred, and it may have, or it may not have, your faith in, or lack thereof, however, has absolutely no effect over whether that event ever occurred, tho.

    B.
     
  9. Evandr2

    Evandr2 Member

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    Cardero - It seems that we are becoming redundant. We both keep expressing our individual opinions the same way over and over.

    However, your last statement is pure gold. That is the moral attached to the Linus syndrome and it seems to be that point where both of our positions converge.

    People are too concerned with how they display their faith rather than if their faith is well founded. If people would simply stop worrying about how their faith looks to others and pursue truth and knowledge, their faith would take care of itself to the point of being evident to others in a very positive light.

    There is truth and knowledge in all areas of creation both temporal and spiritual. Your bridge analogy is temporal and my faith would be based on the strength of building codes and the tracks of others who have traversed it.

    Faith in God is spiritual and requires the spirit to spirit communication between the individual and the Holy Ghost to be strengthened.

    Vandr

    P.S. I am a trekee from way back and I know the episode of Star Trek that you cited. Kirk, Spock, Bones, and Checkov were being tested to see how they would act when given the upper hand after having had their lives threatened.
     
  10. Evandr2

    Evandr2 Member

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    Well said - :clap

    Vandr
     
  11. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    I generally use the terms thus:

    Belief is a general, unqualified synonym of conviction. It does not address evidence, reasons for the particular conviction, or veracity.

    Two subsets of belief are:
    Faith -- belief without adequate cause to believe; with scanty or no supporting evidence.
    Knowledge -- belief based on evidence sufficient that a reasonable person could not logically refute the proposition.

    Truth is the actual state of affairs or the reality of a proposition. Belief may or may not correspond to truth.
     
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  12. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    If I believed that the bridge will support me, I would not need "faith" to cross it. If I believed that the bridge would not support me, then I will not cross it and likewise will not need to call on faith.

    Faith only becomes an issue when I don't know if the bridge will support me or not, but I still want to get across it. Faith is the act of trusting in the unknown. Faith is not "believing" that I know what I don't really know. "Believing in the unknown" would be a form of self-delusion.

    Unfortunately, religions have been trying to teach us for centuries that faith is believing that something is true when in truth we don't really know that it's true at all. Thus, they have been teaching a habit of self-deception and willful pretense as though it were "faith", when it's not. Real faith, on the other hand, is not willful pretense or blinding self-deception. Real faith recognizes the limitations of what we know, and that we can still hope even though we don't know, and that we can act according to that hope even in the face of the unknown because we value it's possibility that much.

    That's my take on it.
     
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  13. Evandr2

    Evandr2 Member

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    Faith unto real power, such as that that Moses had when he parted the Red Sea is a byproduct of knowledge.

    Why is it that people who profess a belief in God deny His ability to instill in us knowledge by the Holy Ghost?

    I realize that this concept is beyond the ability or desire of the majority to grasp but the Lord God can cause that you understand something so completely that you know beyond all doubt that it is true, real, and powerful. You do not have to receive knowledge with one or more of the five senses nor do you have to be able to pass that knowledge along to someone else. They have to receive it themselves.

    God lives, Jesus is His son, and the Holy Ghost is real. Because of that I can be taught by my Heavenly Father without the grandeur of His literal presence and that teaching will be instilled in me with perfect clarity and understanding. Knowledge received of the Holy Ghost is more reliable, more powerful, and more sure than anything I could learn temporally. The five sences can be fooled, the Holy Ghost cannot.

    Vandr
     
  14. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    I believe in caring for your beliefs (dusting them off when they have been sitting too long) or organizing them (when you want or have to reexamine some of them) but I cannot attach any personal meaning to them because that is not the way that I originally found the belief or it might confuse a person that I would eventually want to share this belief with. If we hold meaning and attachment to these beliefs there may be a part of us that might not want to conclude our beliefs (because we are unsure of the outcome) or to let them go (the longer we carry them, the harder it is to discard them).

    An example of this would be if you believe you need to go for a bank for a loan and the bank teller is asking you personal information to process the loan and you are responding to his questions about why it is so important that you get this loan. It is not that the teller is uncaring for your cause, it’s just that the information you are giving them may be unnecessary to the loan application. I have been in debates like this.


    LOL-Well I think this is one of those beliefs that if you have considered it carefully and have taken the time to disprove it or at least figured that it holds no necessity for your life, it would be one of those beliefs that you could discard. The point of the original post above is that believing gives us the freedom to not only choose what we want and need to believe but also prevents others from being able to tell us what we want and need to believe.
    As I have told Evandr2, I hold in my possession beliefs to the contrary. Faith is not something I can use to conclude these beliefs. We do have the ability to develop our intelligence and our powers of reasoning and observation to conclude beliefs. These are resources that are always willing to be tapped.

    I believe so to, the source only comes into question when someone has had a really good track record of delivering messages promptly.

    Victor, could you give us an example where faith could be used in the sample of the bridge crossing?

    What I am basically saying as it pertains to religion is that there are some people who speak about the Bible as if it already has been established as truth; that all of the events in the Bible have taken place and that all the authors have been inspired through God. They believe that faith equals truth instead of them being two different concepts.
     
  15. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    So can human arrogance, hubris, and self-delusion. This is why we need to be skeptical of our own "beliefs". Without skepticism, we become the pawns and victims of our own imaginations, and egos.

    Faith without skepticism is not faith, but blind pretense and self-delusion. It's true that God may have imbued person "X" with perfect knowledge, but it's far more likely that person "X" has deluded himself into believing that his knowledge is perfect when in fact it's not. And such intense self-deceptions cause people to lose and deny their grasp of reality. They begin acting out in response to a reality that isn't real, and they become a danger to themselves and to others. When religions teach people to suppress their skepticism as though this were a necessary part of having "faith", they are promoting mental, and intellectual illness. And I would say they're promoting spiritual illness as well.
     
  16. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    Though I believe that being a male is a personal choice, I will not approach that discussion in this thread but I do want to thank you for pointing out what was basically a poor example. I usually use diseases to promote this theory. For example (a better one this time):

    Personal Truth: I have diabetes, mrscardero does not.

    This explores the concept that not everyone has diabetes nor is it a universal truth that everyone will get diabetes.
     
  17. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    Not if their faith is peppered with hope. Hope is a disturbing distraction to reality. When I debate religious people, sometimes it is difficult to understand them through all the sneezing. Their posts are interwoven with scripture and examples of doctrine that make the reasoning process difficult. I can debate and discuss belief, I cannot debate faith. Sometimes when I see posts like this I wonder if the hope that was promised by their deity is dwindling and if they are not just trying to reach out for assurance of others.

    “One who truly understands, knows; one who truly doesn’t understand, hopes.”

    I think it stems from the belief that religions promote that you have to be chosen in order receive this knowledge. Instilling a human being with that someone hasn’t met or hasn’t had a chance to gather trust for "divine" knowledge develops a sort of chasm without a bridge between Creator and individual.
     
  18. uumckk16

    uumckk16 Active Member

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    I really like what you've said here, especially the bolded part. In my personal spirituality, I try to follow what you've called 'real faith', and I love how you worded it. Great post! :D
     
  19. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    1) A road map is the descriptor, the road it refers to is the thing described by the map, the relationship between the descriptor and the thing described has the quality of being more or less accurate, or truthful.

    2) The words, "I am a male" are the descriptor, my sex is the thing described, the relationship between the descriptor and my sex has the quality of being accurate or truthful.

    I hope this helps.
     
  20. uumckk16

    uumckk16 Active Member

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    Because not everyone who believes in God believes in the Holy Ghost/Trinity. ;)
     
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