Re: virus: Haven't we been around this bend before?

Eric Boyd (
Sun, 7 Mar 1999 13:39:17 -0500


From: Reed Konsler <>
>"Faith is a disciplined way of thinking, its purpose is to create
>a useful model of the world."

I don't see how this is a definition of faith. A better one would be:

Faith is a disciplined way of thinking, its purpose is to maintain and strengthen belief in ones current model of the world.

We must always remember that the words true source and definition is the Bible, which says faith is "the evidence of things not seen" (Heb 11:1), which is to say, faith acts AS the justification of belief, not as some kind of creator of beliefs, as you maintain above.

Even if you want to claim that the meaning has changed, or broadened since Paul wrote Hebrews, I think you'll find that most dictionaries (which reflect current usage) disagree. Mine lists four:

Faith; n.

1) strong belief in something, esp. without evidence
2) a specific system of religious beliefs
3) *complete* confidence or trust, such as in a person or remedy
4) allegiance to a person or cause

Now, in all fairness, reason itself often acts as a justification of belief as well, but only via it's structure -- as a conduit for "evidence" -- not by it's mere presence. I would also like to think that sometimes the conclusions of rational arguments are so surprising that reason can have been said to *create* new beliefs (Godel's incompleteness theorem comes to mind, as does the Argument from Evil), although I admit this is rare.