Faith and Reason

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Faith and Reason Faith and reason can be viewed as opposites. Faith is an element of belief, something an individual does not necessarily require a reason for accepting without reason. For example, an individual’s reason for believing in God may not seem too rational when they are trying to explain them. They may not even stand up to criticism. On the other hand, reason is constructed as a formula. Faith is basically something we believe in, like something we learn in church. Reason is something we learn in school, such as a math formula. A long time ago, prior to the scientific revolution, it was considered anti-Semitic that reason supported religion. The Counterbalance Foundation website observes that before this time, science that contradicted religion was wrong. “When we look at the history of science, we see that in fact it owes an immense debt to the religious world. In the early Middle Ages – a time when Christian Europe turned away from scientific thinking -- the science, mathematics, and astronomy of the ancient Greeks was kept alive in the Islamic world, where it was further developed and enriched by Moslem scholars. In the thirteenth century when this scientific heritage began to filter back into Western Europe, it was originally taken up by Christian monks and theologians” (Counterbalance, faith and reason). To sum up this idea, scholars found a way to "change” science to support religion. Scientists today view science as something derived from experimentation. In earlier times, medieval scholars saw science as something derived from tradition. Such scholars had probably established these “traditions” of science as Plato, Pythagoras and Ptolemy. However, these men were probably not scientists, in fact, they were m... ... middle of paper ... ...neral, we let faith alone. As Haldane notes, “science is good at giving explanations of events and circumstances within nature, [but] it is not equipped to explain the preconditions of the possibility of there being a natural order” (Haldane, xx). In other words, science can explain what it can see and test, but not what it cannot. For that we need faith, which can inspire us, ennoble us, and fill us with joy in a way that pure rationalism never could. While it may no longer be possible to merge faith and reason, it may be just as well after all. Bibliography: . “Faith and Reason.” Counterbalance Foundation website. http://www.counterbalance.com/faithandreason 2. Cantor, Norman F. The Civilization of the Middle Ages. HarperCollins, NY, 1993. 3. Haldane, John. “Faith, Reason, and the Meaning of Life.” http://www.thetablet.co.uk/ppoct98.htm

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