Where does belief come from?

Discussion in 'Philosophy, Religion and Spirituality' started by pointwithinacircle2, Dec 15, 2017.

  1. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

    3,702
    2,543
    133
    We're on a theme "the greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is illusion of knowledge" Stephen Hawkin. It's basically what Mark Twain said when quoted above.

    A paradigm can both be a tool and a shackle. What counts is your ability to use a paradigm, to examine an idea, and move in and out of the paradigm to evaluate the idea. In this case, the idea is a belief. So I guess, if you want robust beliefs that have a chance at being correct, the key is critical thought and education to help you shape that thought.
     
    Athena and coachn like this.
  2. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

    1,795
    1,713
    133
    Agreed!
    Agreed!
     
  3. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

    3,715
    2,127
    133
    Thomas Kuhn's "The Structure of Scientific Revolutions" discusses paradigms extensively. It's one of the most important books of modern philosophy and modern history. Should be on the top 50 reading list of non-fiction books to read during your life.

    Your statement is one step beyond his lessons. Thanks!
     
    Bloke and coachn like this.
  4. hanzosbm

    hanzosbm Premium Member

    705
    553
    113
    I've often said of Freemasonry (but, really, philosophy in general) that the most important word is 'why'. I believe that it is in constantly challenging our thoughts that we grow. 'Why' is a challenge though not always an argumentative one and in my experience helps to either follow a thought to new places or to discover a flaw in one's beliefs, which requires an adaptation.
    Of course, all of this, as Coach pointed out, is predicated on integrity. I remember going through these exercises with a young man who had requested my help in talking through some ideas. When the idea of 'why' was applied, his original idea started to break down. Rather than accept this and reconsidering his original hypothesis, he began to come up with support for his argument that I highly doubt he himself believed. Therefore, being able to honestly challenge one's own beliefs is paramount.
     
    LK600 and coachn like this.
  5. coachn

    coachn Coach John S. Nagy Premium Member

    1,795
    1,713
    133
    I've heard it said...
    • Religion and Philosophy make every effort to answer "why".
    • Science makes every effort to answer "Who, What, Where, How, When, ...".
    Both seek to do this with the utmost of integrity. However the practitioners are sometimes biased in this. ;-)
     
    dfreybur, Bloke and LK600 like this.
  6. Bloke

    Bloke Premium Member

    3,702
    2,543
    133
    Thanks - I will put that on my reading list...
     
  7. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

    1,485
    417
    83
    Kuhn certainly had a very great impact on my view of science, but I have not abandoned Popper's falsification method in my own process even though it is not sufficient in itself.

    http://www.iep.utm.edu/pop-sci/
     
    dfreybur likes this.
  8. pointwithinacircle2

    pointwithinacircle2 Rapscallion Premium Member

    803
    833
    113
    I acknowledge that this statement is a valid paradigm, and that many (if not most) people agree with it. It is simply not my paradigm. For me philosophy, and Freemasonry, are best summed up as "the search for the best way to think about things".
     
    coachn and hanzosbm like this.
  9. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

    1,485
    417
    83
    >Freemasonry, are best summed up as "the search for the best way to think about things".

    If Freemasonry is a science then there ought to be some doing after the thinking (speculation)
     
  10. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

    3,715
    2,127
    133
    I have a copy of "The Logic of Scientific Discovery" in my current reading queue. Probably 1-2 years out given my reading rate for printed books. If it comes available as an audio-book before then I'll "read" it sooner.
     
    Bloke likes this.
  11. pointwithinacircle2

    pointwithinacircle2 Rapscallion Premium Member

    803
    833
    113
    To Know, To Will, To Dare, To Keep Silent
     
  12. Athena

    Athena Registered User

    19
    8
    3
    As long as you studied and tested your beliefs as true and they are good, then you follow and carry out the belief. I would say we'd be on the right path.
    Most importantly actually believe in that belief do not pretend.
     
  13. Athena

    Athena Registered User

    19
    8
    3
    Edit: I am unsure if applying it plural is appropriate but I'm against division and recently picked up a book called "the laws of teamwork" one of the laws is one man never does it alone, he's had more than one person help him out to accomplish his dreams, goals, ambitions.

    Well instead of editing I quoted myself. I'm so flawed.
     
  14. Pointwithinacircle3

    Pointwithinacircle3 Registered User

    16
    19
    3
    I recently ran across the idea that "Beliefs are ideas that you judge with". I kind of like that.
     
    Bloke likes this.
  15. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

    1,485
    417
    83
    So: the more beliefs the more judgement?
     
  16. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

    3,715
    2,127
    133
    I like the statement "The nice thing about science is it works whether you believe it or not". Which is itself a belief.

    As men of the liberal arts and sciences, we work with the concrete. We know there is an objective reality and that our beliefs about it can be correct or incorrect.

    As men of faith who look to that undiscovered country from when none return, we know there is more to life than the concrete. Faith, as long as it is carefully limited to not conflict with the concrete, gives our lives far more meaning.

    Parlor magic is the science of finding and exploiting errors in human perception and cognition. Philosophy is the art of controlling reason. Because human reason is flawed, it can be hard to tease out which is which on any one topic.
     
    Bloke likes this.
  17. Pointwithinacircle3

    Pointwithinacircle3 Registered User

    16
    19
    3
    Not necessarily. I would say the more correct your beliefs are the more likely that your judgements will be correct, not that there will be more of them.
     
  18. Pointwithinacircle3

    Pointwithinacircle3 Registered User

    16
    19
    3
    Please forgive me if I take issue with your use of the word controlling. To me Philosophy is a conversation in which both sides try to to enlarge their understanding of a topic by careful considering, comparing, and contrasting another persons opinion with their own opinions and beliefs in order to arrive at the best workable theory about a given topic. To me this distinctly different from science which seeks to arrive at "the one true answer" that it can then label as "Truth".
     
  19. JamestheJust

    JamestheJust Registered User

    1,485
    417
    83
    >Philosophy is the art of controlling reason.

    This seems to me to restrict the nature of mental processes. For example, can the mind operate experientially in more ways than application of rules of logic?

    What if the mind also has sensate functions - for example finding words that fit together.

    Consider also if the mind can construct a reality and then operate experimentally within that reality. For example Tesla maintained that he could construct machines in his mind, operate them for perhaps 2000 hours, then dismantle them in his mind to examine the wear characteristics. He said when he built the machine, perhaps years later, it had exactly the wear characteristics as his mental model.

    Charles Dickens reported a similar observation of mental reality in developing his writings.

    What then are the mental means available in developing a philosophy?
     
  20. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

    3,715
    2,127
    133
    A lesson from engineering, so it's my bias to use it as a source and as context -

    What you don't measure you can't control. What you don't control you can't improve.

    It's a form of concrete reasoning, yet philosophy has not always been concrete. It's my bias that the value in philosophy is the degree to which it can be applied. Noticing that I mentioned that the Master Mason degree is about moving beyond the concrete, which has some meaning other than concrete value.

    One of the major separations of humans from our fellow animals is our amount of reason. Philosophy was developed to increase and improve our reason by applying tools and processes to it.

    You went off the rails there. Philosophy, as it improves and increases the reason, teaches that there is no absolute truth in the concrete reasoning realm. As such any claim of absolute truth is an exit from reason. As such any claim of absolute truth is an exit from philosophy. Which is why in many ways to categorize fields of study religion is a sibling of philosophy not either a subset nor superset of philosophy.
     

Share My Freemasonry