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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Theory and faith unite

A theory isn't a theory unless there are supporting facts. Until there are supporting facts, it's just a guess or postulation. For example, it is just a theory that the ball will fall to the ground if you let go of it. A theory is the best explanation given the facts that we can measure. If there is nothing that can be measured and tested, then it can't be a theory. This is called rational thought. Conclusions are based on tests that can be repeated.

Faith by its very definition "a belief in things not seen" is not rational. Now don't kill me for saying this, but it is not an explanation for things based on repeatable tests. Therefore, it does not follow the classic definition of rational thought. Our faith is based on many things, but it is not rational. It is how we feel. This does not mean that I deny that faith exists. I firmly believe that it does. I also believe that faith is an untapped power within us that we do not understand. But my belief is only that... a belief... a postulation. For I have no empirical evidence to support that belief.

The belief of those who stand judging is not a belief at all. It is, simply and purely, a hateful bigotry. You need no faith to be a bigot. You need no proof or reason. Someone is different than you and you find some way to exclude that person. It's really swell when you can base your stupidity on something else that your friends and family can agree with. This is how bigotry creeps its way into religion.

I've studied Christ extensively. Most of what is written of him is suspect for it was written decades after he died. Nevertheless, I find no bigotry or hatred in his actions or his life from these writings. He never condemned. He always opened his arms to the downtrodden and afflicted. He had immeasurable love and acceptance.

We do live in a time of tribulation. From the religious perspective, we can endure, we can be faithful. From the scientific perspective, we can research, we can look for explanations. Yet, these things are not enough to make things right. We have a duty, a responsibility, from both perspectives to unite and make the world a better place. Religion and rational thought can coexist with respect for personal rights and freedoms. That's where we need to look. That's where we need to go.


Copyright 2007 by Cindi Jones

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