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The Importance of Belief

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posted on May, 30 2019 @ 01:56 PM
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“I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.”

- Gerry Spence


You may have heard or read this quote before. To me, it defines a large part of my philosophy. Some might even consider that a belief in itself. I would agree and say this it certainly is one. This leads me to consider that one cannot be in a state of having no belief (in anything), since it would require a belief to embody that state.

This thought begs the question, what exactly makes a belief worth having and why are they important (or not) to create, adopt, and potentially maintain? Is it even possible to hold oneself to the pseudo-state of having no beliefs and still function “successfully” within society? Is it possible to keep such a philosophy to oneself and maintain a healthy social environment?

These are questions I often ask myself and have trouble answering. I tend to strongly agree with the quote above, but to what degree does this philosophy affect my way of life? At what point does a person not justify something that they feel so strongly about, a sacrifice if you will, to integrate or maintain that which is needed or required to function?

I strongly think/believe (call it what you want), that the more beliefs a person has, the more they’re inclined to limit their ability to think rationally. What complicates things further, is that a person's belief on what constitutes rationality, often solidifies the reasoning behind creating or adopting a belief in the first place.

This presents a conundrum of sorts, as beliefs end up needing to rely on other beliefs in order to be substantiated. The question will always remain, unless forfeiting one’s decision to a consensus, whether or not one’s “belief” in how rational they are is good enough to rationalize what is worth, or not worth, believing.

I’m interested in what your thoughts are.


edit on 30-5-2019 by eurhythmic because: (no reason given)




posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:32 PM
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René Descartes famously propositioned, "Cogito, ergo sum." If that is correct, then to be is to think and the think is to be. To think without believing something seems, to me, to be impossible, because the very act of thinking requires some essential presuppositions to underly the very act of thinking itself. At least, one must believe that one exists.

If one exists, then some kind of belief about the environment that one inhabits must, of necesity, follow. One may believe that all of reality is a construct of one's own existence, but that is a belief.

One may believe that everything came out of nothing by pure chance, that existence - without intelligence, purpose, intent or design - just accidentally beleched out all that is. This, in itself, is a belief system that requires more "faith" than any religion, to affirm that a cosmos that operates on the principle of entropy organized itself spontaneously out of the great void.

One may believe that the cosmos and all that dwells in it is the creation of an intelligent being that crated it all with design, intent and purpose.

Any of these underlying perspectives constitute a belief and form the basis for a belief system, and one cannot think and therefore be without going there.

So my answer is now, it is not possible to exist without belief.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:35 PM
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a reply to: eurhythmic

I agree that a lack of belief = belief.
I don't think we could exist without beliefs. Everything requires belief.
The problem comes when you actually start to settle on beliefs. Then we dare to think some things are actually "true".
That's when the problems begin.

We need to move on from one belief to the next one, throwing the old ones away. Nothing is ever still, or real or true, we should never settle.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:39 PM
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I'd continue, in response to your quote from, Gerry Spence, the following:

It is in the nature of humankind to be inquisitiveness, to seek out, to find reason and order. The very state of wonder in any normal human leads to inquisitiveness, which leads to discovery, which leads to defining certain beliefs about the cosmos in which we live.

Oxford Dictionary defines the noun wonder as: A feeling of amazement and admiration, caused by something beautiful, remarkable, or unfamiliar. The verb, however, is defined as follows: Desire to know something; feel curious.

The two are not separate; indeed, they are inextricably linked. To experience that feeling of amazement and admiration is to question its source, it's reason for being amazing and admirable. It is unnatural to be in wonder without wondering.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:42 PM
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originally posted by: EmmanuelGoldstein
a reply to: eurhythmic

I agree that a lack of belief = belief.
I don't think we could exist without beliefs. Everything requires belief.
The problem comes when you actually start to settle on beliefs. Then we dare to think some things are actually "true".
That's when the problems begin.

We need to move on from one belief to the next one, throwing the old ones away. Nothing is ever still, or real or true, we should never settle.


Then what is the point of a belief if one does not actually believe it?

This sounds more like an intellectually and philosophically dishonest cop-out than an actual ontologically or epistemologically sound position.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:43 PM
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a reply to: eurhythmic

Belief is the absence of knowledge. There are a few things nobody can know and all we can do is make a decision what we want to believe.
Some have the strength to go through life as agnostic, but one needs a tolerance for uncertainty.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:46 PM
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originally posted by: Peeple
a reply to: eurhythmic

Belief is the absence of knowledge. There are a few things nobody can know and all we can do is make a decision what we want to believe.
Some have the strength to go through life as agnostic, but one needs a tolerance for uncertainty.


Then what is your knowledge based on? You are 100% certain of everything that you have knowledge of without believing anything? How does that work?



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:55 PM
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a reply to: eurhythmic

I have my own belief system, it is a religion,

But they work best if you are a bit subgenius about it all, take everything very seriously then just take a nice dump all over it and make a beautiful painting,

Never forget opposite day either, always step in the shoes of someone else.




posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:57 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Huh? The sky is blue. Works just fine.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 02:58 PM
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originally posted by: Peeple
a reply to: incoserv

Huh? The sky is blue. Works just fine.


Typical materialist answer. Why is there a sky? And why is it blue?
:
edit on 2019 5 30 by incoserv because: I could.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:01 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Atmosphere, gases, light. Do you have a point or are you just trying to be annoying?



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:02 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

I had a bit of an existential crisis yesterday when i noticed that i could 3d print a fossil from the correct material and crystalline the material and surface, and on top of it all embed it in a matrix so someone could find it later,

i could fool a scientist, would never know its a fake.

Needed to take a couple of long breaths.
All kind of weird (SNIP) started going around the poor ol ead.
edit on 30-5-2019 by solve because: (no reason given)[/editby

Will not ever again laugh at crazy jeebus people, when they say that maybe dino fossils were put in the ground by someone, or maybe jeebus or god is testing your faith. I thought it would be impossible. It is not impossible.
edit on 30-5-2019 by solve because: (no reason given)
extra DIV



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:10 PM
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originally posted by: Peeple
a reply to: incoserv

Atmosphere, gases, light. Do you have a point or are you just trying to be annoying?


R.C. Sproul told about a conversation that he had with Carl Sagan years ago. As I recall Sproul's account of the interchange, he asked Sagan that if the universe started in the "Big Bang," in an instant when all matter was compressed in to a single infinitesimally small point, what caused that point to "explode" into the universe that exists, given the second law of thermodynamics (which says in part, simply stated, says that closed systems go from order to disorder) and the principle of inertia (the tendency for a body at rest to remain at rest unless acted upon by an outside force) from a purely materialistic perspective.

He said that Sagan's answer was simply, "I don't want to go there," or something to that effect. You see, Sagan gave that intellectually dishonest answer because to reason it out meant that he would have to go beyond what he knew and step into belief.

Sagan thought that Sproul was just trying to be annoying.

Our knowledge only goes so far. Your annoyance is due to your inability to get to the root of the questions that I raise. It's much easier to be annoyed and make subtly ad hominem rejoinders than to actually face your own existential quandaries.

:
edit on 2019 5 30 by incoserv because: I could.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:15 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Pretty sure the universe is not just expanding, it also comes back, it breathes and all breathes with it,

Evidence can be found in the red shift blue shift, one of them is an illusion because of new matter, and the other one goes down from the draining system.

Wow check out my edit on the previous post, i did not write "exta DIV" in the end, what does it mean?
edit on 30-5-2019 by solve because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:16 PM
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originally posted by: solve
a reply to: incoserv

Pretty sure the universe is not just expanding, it also comes back, it breathes and all breathes with it,

Evidence can be found in the red shift blue shift, one of them is an illusion because of new matter, and the other one goes down from the draining system.


"Pretty sure?"

So, that's your belief?
:
edit on 2019 5 30 by incoserv because: I could.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:16 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Well the sky stays blue if I know why or not doesn't change that. I never said I know everything and I don't feel the need to.
That doesn't mean I have to believe it's blue, it's a fact because everybody agrees it is the way we see it everyday.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:19 PM
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originally posted by: Peeple
a reply to: incoserv

Well the sky stays blue if I know why or not doesn't change that. I never said I know everything and I don't feel the need to.
That doesn't mean I have to believe it's blue, it's a fact because everybody agrees it is the way we see it everyday.


What if somebody disagrees with you? What if blue does not exist?

The question presented in the OP is not what we think or what seems "pretty sure." The question is not about what color the sky is or how I perceive that color.

The question is an existential and epistemological one of whether one can exist without beliefs. When one avoids or obfuscates a question, it is generally because that question makes one uncomfortable by exposing one's lack of knowledge or inability to deal with the realities that it lays bear.
:
edit on 2019 5 30 by incoserv because: I could.



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:19 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Pretty sure means i have not gone through all the material available and because of personal experiences that support this, will have to come back for it later, other things are of more interest right now,,

edit on 30-5-2019 by solve because: Knows how to write haha


And yes it is my belief, then i make a mockery from it just for funzies

It is good for neuroplasticity
edit on 30-5-2019 by solve because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:30 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

Like you do?
What did I say that bothers you? That it takes strength to live with not knowing without jumping to beliefs to fill the gap?



posted on May, 30 2019 @ 03:37 PM
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a reply to: incoserv

If a tree falls in a forest (observable space) and no one is around to hear it (i mean nothing that can observe or be affected by it) does it make a sound?

I am "pretty sure" (haaahaa
) that the tree does not exist and it did not happen.




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