Can faith be used as a valid form of justification?

Asked by: Apparelled
  • Faith is trust,

    I originally posted this comment on another thread and I wanted to pose it to a greater audience so I present it again here as a new opinion:

    Before I continue I wish to clarify that I do not intend to imply science as being faith based, nor am I associating faith with a belief in a higher power. I do not wish to incite a religion argument, only conversation on the validity of a faith based decision. So from here on out I will substitute the word faith for the word trust, as they are interchangeable .

    Trust synonyms: confidence, belief, faith, certainty, assurance, conviction, credence;

    I begin by stating that scientific research requires trust, as there are a great many theories that are utilized in science. I am aware that these theories are mainly based on the extensive use of logic and reasoning, but is important to note have not been proven as absolutes. So when a theory is utilized in computing a scientific principle there is a very small aspect of that calculation that requires the calculator to utilize a trust based decision (as the theory is not an absolute). So science is not purely based upon reasoning and logic and in fact ,to a small degree, is subject to the parameter of trust. What science tries to do at this point is eliminate the trust portion of the equation by proving the theory. Which is highly logical I agree, but now we must view the concept of a theory eventually being proven as an absolute. Now some scientists view theories from an agnostic perspective (as in not ever being possible to prove) and others view them from a gnostic perspective (one day will be proven). Regardless of this, both views presently utilize trust as an aspect in their calculations. But allow me to delve even further and focus on the concept of an agnostic theory. If you do not believe that something can ever be proven, then you must accept that when utilizing any theory you will require trust as part of all future calculations. Which would mean that in order to form a justifiable conclusion you were required to use the principles of logic, reasoning and trust. Conversely if we look at the concept of a gnostic theory, then you are claiming that it is possible to achieve such knowledge. Also if you don't think that all theories can be proven then you must now revert to what I stated about views on agnostic theories. So if you believe that all theories can be proven, then you must also believe that it is possible for someone/something to (eventually) attain all knowledge of the universe. (Continued in responses....)

  • Freedom of Religion

    Has its boundaries. You can use faith to justify an action, and to say that you cannot is a violation of human rights. HOWEVER, it does matter what the action is. For example, if you kill someone because "God told you to," you're ridiculous. However, if you do something within reason that you justify based on faith, that is absolutely within your rights.

  • Yes, faith is about as valid as any other reason.

    To deny this is to deny that everyone is entitled to his or her own collection of experiences. To expect perfect scientific methodology for every action or thought is to force too many actions and thoughts into inaction; i.E., if I do not have the belief this might be right, I am unable to do this. One might argue that is the way things ought to be, but doing so forces an elimination of all risk. Of course, one is still subject to the consequences of an action, but there is more to the universe than what scientific methodology has managed to catalog. One's experiences and beliefs do indeed lead to faith.

  • Not for Justification

    You should never *justify* an action or line of reasoning on the basis of faith alone.

    You can most surely grant an initial amount of faith as a foundation without any further information, however the belief in question will rapidly move into a new realm that requires real solid data, not just a hunch or desire to believe. If we choose to follow something important on the basis of belief alone, we are led down a very dangerous path of ignorance.

  • Reason, faith, wild guess

    Humans are way to fallible to use faith to justify our actions. Suppose some said, "I drunk a 40 oz but I had faith that God/luck would get me home without crashing" and sure enough, they end up crashing. Faith is a guess, luck. You can't justify something just based off of luck. Now guesses may be justified but you need REASONS. You have to follow a logical train of thought.

    Now I'm going to be a bit of a hypocrite. I am a lady and I use my "intuition" more than my head for everyday life. But things like lawsuits and scientific discoveries...To be objective and fair, you can't just use "faith".

  • Differentiation of Opinion

    Not everyone shares a faith. Therefore, arguments of faith mean different things to different people. If you tell me 'God said…' in an argument, I don't accept that as validation. I don't share the belief system. You can pull in faith all you want- but only people who share your faith will put any stock in the argument. Everyone else will think they just proved their own point, because you're bringing up stuff that sounds like nonsense to them.

    Posted by: Maia
  • Faith is an extension of opinion

    Faith is just opinion, many people may have faith but they may believe in different or opposing things. A justification is a reason, a logical response to "why did that have to happen" if a jewish man went back in time to kill Hitler his justification wouldn't be "because I am jewish" it might be "because he is a danger to the Jewish people," that'd be one or "he was the cause of so much suffering in the world" these are justifications for killing, however if you way it is your faith that drives you to do something that's not justified because your faith and opinion is not based on solid logical reasoning

  • No, faith is different for everybody and so can only be used to justify that which solely affects an individual belonging to that faith.

    Of course personal decisions and life-choices can be justified using faith. If a person is to say "I am vegetarian because my faith forbids eating meat", that is a perfectly legitimate reason for that individual to be vegetarian. The extent of faith's use as justification is when whatever is being justified directly affects people who do not belong to that faith. To exemplify, "You cannot get married to that person of the same gender as you because my faith forbids same-sex marriage", is not a reasonable justification through religion because the person is using their religion, which is specific and individual to them, to exert control over the life of a person whose faith is different to theirs. Faith is completely individual, and even two people belonging to the same religion will never believe exactly the same thing. So nobody can ever use their own personal faith to justify something that affects a person other than themselves.

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