What is faith? And more importantly, what is it good for?
For some religious people, faith is the firm expectative of a certain reality, even if it is not at sight.
For a neurologist like Dean Burnett, the brain always needs to give a logical explanation within the brain's boundaries. These boundaries are limited to which we feed them.
If there is no "logical explanation" the brain looks for an explanation out of imagination but always using previous information. So faith has always a starting point on something we know, to give an explanation about issues we cannot be certain of.
Who is writing our faith today?
In the past, humans thought political and religious leaders were right. So we followed the path they marked and grown our own faith from this starting point. After that, we saw leaders are as fallible as we are, so we started to look somewhere else. Evolution theory appeared, and again, starting from things we could take as certain, built a theory with this starting point.
Both options come to a certain point on which "blind faith" is needed, both as much as credible, both as much as fallible.
So next time-lapse left us orphans of something that is needed to our community survival, that is, human values. Without love, righteousness, and whatsoever any religion has on their sacred books, human relationships crash.
And human values are turning too. In the past, nobody was concerned about killing animals for food. Now we have a strong trend, vegans, who are putting on the table (oops) another concept, that is, that any life, not only human, is sacred.
It is obvious that, according to the above, we believe and put faith starting to what we have learned. It depends as well where are you born, which by defect, determines if you are Moslem, Christian or other. But to be on the right faith cannot be the fruit of casualty about where did you come to life. So no ultimate truth, believe or faith is at hand, as they are all subjective.
In any culture or religion, there are common and immovable values which can be taken as certain, just for the fruits they give. All these mentioned human values, immutable and eternal, are the parts I rescue to build my particular set of "Frankenstein faith", taking the valid parts, discard the rotten ones, and start from scratch putting together parts which fit with each other.
- Assumptions can be dangerous, as they could lead us to wrong paths, and are always based and built starting on something we know for certain, same as “ultimate truth” is.
So the tricky thing here is to decide if one "truth" is really a truth or if in reality is an assumption.
Whenever I want to know if what is in front of me is an assumption or a truth, I always try to come back to the above mentioned Immovable human values and look at the issue from this perspective. Normally, the path to follow is illuminated again, as wrong assumptions and habits never fit with high human values.
What is faith good for?
The problem is, humans, cannot live without any of it. Just like diabetics in front of a bakery, we are salivating for things that can be poisonous for us.
Getting confused by following an assumption instead of real faith, have led humankind to the worst along with the history. Inquisition, Crusades, or 20th-century fascism are just some examples of it.
No matter how intelligent or powerful we could be, without faith, we are empty, without purpose.
We are the engine, and faith is our gasoline.
Depending on which kind of combustible we feed ourselves, will determine how far and fast we will go. After truly understanding this point, anything is possible.
Image found at Devianart