Paper 4 Topic 2

814 Words4 Pages
There are many different opinions about the differences between faith and reason. Traditionally viewed differences between reason and faith are that reason is something that requires empirical, factual evidence while faith relies merely on, well, faith. For something to have reason it must have some kind of factual evidence to make it true, or at least very good sound reasoning to believe that whatever it is, is factual. Faith is far from something that attains empirical evidence, faith usually relies on personal accounts which are usually of mystical content. Many philosophers have different opinions about how the two can coexist; some say under no circumstances at all, while others claim they can justify each other, and some claim faith is reason alone. Some philosophers claim that believing in God is an obvious choice by the claim that just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it isn’t there like Blaise Pascal. Blasé Pascal and Clifford offer two completely different standpoints on the role of reason and faith.
Blaise Pascal claims that having faith in God is an easy and obvious choice. Pascal claims that the reasoning to believe God is obvious, and claims that just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean it isn’t there. He relates this to the number infinity, and although you can’t comprehend it or see it, we know that it exists. “We know that there is an infinite, and are largely ignorant of its nature. As we know it to be false that numbers are finite, it is therefore true that there is an infinity in number. But we do not know what it is. It is false that it is even, it is false that it is odd; for the addition of a unit can make no change in its nature. Yet it is a number, and every number is odd or even (this is c...

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...between faith and reason but I think Clifford has a way more logical way of considering faith and belief in God than Pascal. Clifford offers a very sound argument for why it is important not to call pragmatic considerations justification for God, and also and argument for why it is so important that we have really good evidence when making justifications. I believe that both reasoning, and faith are required to believe in anything and that the reasoning side of the equation needs to be diligently and mindfully considered. I also believe that to find empirical evidence of God may be impossible, so it’s important that faith and belief are based on strong reasoning even without empirical evidence. Believing in something because it’s comforting in the will only cause a great deal of people to blindly follow and never ask questions leading to a very misguided society.
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