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Suzie

Faith vs. Knowledge

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As I was thinking more about this, I recalled a conference talk, linked below, called "But If Not..."

Elder Dennis E Simmons talked about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego.  They had faith that God was able to save them.  But they also had faith that if He didn't, that they were still doing what they were supposed to.

I think this sign might be better like 

Quote

Faith is believing that God can, hoping that He will and doing your part.

 

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/general-conference/2004/04/but-if-not?lang=eng

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27 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

I do too. First degree murder? Eh, no big deal. Posting a "Live, Love, Laugh" banner as your Facebook background? Unforgivable. 
😉

Glad we can agree on such a serious topic :)

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@Just_A_Guy @MarginOfError

Some people think about Faith as blind and illogical without realizing that needs to be based in some sort of dogmatic knowledge, in other words Rational Faith. Over the years, I have seen how Faith and doubt are treated as direct enemies and it annoys me a little bit. Perhaps because in my personal experience my doubts have been a driving force to action, I cannot imagine my life without them and I’m very cognizant at the fact that they shouldn't diminish my Faith but fuel it. Doubt is without a doubt (sorry, I had to say it) a prerequisite to Faith and we should stop demonizing it. Having said that, I admit my doubts are not necessarily dogmatic in nature.

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1 minute ago, Suzie said:

@Just_A_Guy @MarginOfError

Some people think about Faith as blind and illogical without realizing that needs to be based in some sort of dogmatic knowledge, in other words Rational Faith. Over the years, I have seen how Faith and doubt are treated as direct enemies and it annoys me a little bit. Perhaps because in my personal experience my doubts have been a driving force to action, I cannot imagine my life without them and I’m very cognizant at the fact that they shouldn't diminish my Faith but fuel it. Doubt is without a doubt (sorry, I had to say it) a prerequisite to Faith and we should stop demonizing it. Having said that, I admit my doubts are not necessarily dogmatic in nature.

Can you elaborate a bit on what you mean by “dogmatic knowledge”?

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Well, knowledge can be dogmatic or critical in nature. Dogmatic knowledge for me is the acceptance of a particular set of beliefs without going through the process of rational/logical analysis or deconstruction but with a very important distinction: The person receiving it relies on the truthfulness of the storyteller.  We have been believing in stories through dogmatic knowledge for centuries. In my view, Faith is based on dogmatic knowledge.

Edited by Suzie
typo

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3 hours ago, Suzie said:

Doubt is without a doubt (sorry, I had to say it) a prerequisite to Faith and we should stop demonizing it. Having said that, I admit my doubts are not necessarily dogmatic in nature.

As Christ is our perfect exemplar of faith and growing grace for grace, I "doubt" Christ ever required "doubt" as a prerequisite for faith. Desire is actually the prerequisite for/of faith and knowledge:

"I, Nephi, was desirous also that I might see, and hear, and know of these things, by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is the gift of God unto gall those who diligently seek him," (emphasis mine)

"But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words." (emphasis mine) The next verse confirms how desire is a prerequisite to faith and knowledge).

Doubt is the reason why we have "Mormon Stories." However, although imperfect, our Father in Heaven loves us, and is willing to work through our doubts if we exercise a particle of faith, even if it is a "desire to believe" then we can experiment with that desire/hope and receive an increase of faith.

We can even see with the father in the New Testament, his "desire" for his daughter to be healed is what brought him to Christ. When the Lord asked if he believed (no doubt), his response was in the affirmative. The Lord knew otherwise, and then the father admitted "Help thou my unbelief." If he doubted, with all his heart, he would have never reached out to the Lord, but the substance of all other miracles being done by the Lord allowed him to exercise sufficient faith, a particle, in order for his daughter to be healed.

If doubt is a prerequisite of faith we wouldn't have scriptures that specify, "Doubt not but be believing." Or words from sons regarding their mothers, "they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them."

 

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On 11/20/2019 at 3:23 PM, Suzie said:

I saw this at a client's house today. Definition of faith or definition of knowledge?

<Faith is not believing that God can -- it is knowing that he will>

Will what?

I'm assuming it means that he will save, but then I have to ask why? Why would he save anyone and based on the answer to that, then we'd have the definition of what Faith is...

Besides, belief precedes faith. Because I believe God will, my faith is seen by the things I do to be one with Him.

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On 11/21/2019 at 6:58 PM, Suzie said:

@Just_A_Guy @MarginOfError

Some people think about Faith as blind and illogical without realizing that needs to be based in some sort of dogmatic knowledge, in other words Rational Faith. Over the years, I have seen how Faith and doubt are treated as direct enemies and it annoys me a little bit. Perhaps because in my personal experience my doubts have been a driving force to action, I cannot imagine my life without them and I’m very cognizant at the fact that they shouldn't diminish my Faith but fuel it. Doubt is without a doubt (sorry, I had to say it) a prerequisite to Faith and we should stop demonizing it. Having said that, I admit my doubts are not necessarily dogmatic in nature.

Um, well, we agree. I know I've said it somewhere before, but I believe doubt is an inherent part of faith. Where one exists, the other must also. 

I know many here will (and have) argued that with me, but they almost always argue from a different set of assumptions and definitions, which lead them to a different conclusion.

But at its core, all of mathematics is what you call dogmatic knowledge and rational faith. The real number system is built on top of 13 axioms that are accepted without proof. Those axioms greatly impact the outcome of theorems. For instance, if you accept the distributive property of multiplication over addition, then a negative times a negative is positive. If you reject the distributive property, them a positive times a positive is positive, a negative times a negative is negative, and a negative times a positive cannot be resolved.

In a similar manner, I like to adopt different assumptions about religion sometimes, and see what the conclusions are.

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On 11/23/2019 at 5:12 AM, MarginOfError said:

 ... But at its core, all of mathematics is what you call dogmatic knowledge and rational faith. The real number system is built on top of 13 axioms that are accepted without proof. Those axioms greatly impact the outcome of theorems. For instance, if you accept the distributive property of multiplication over addition, then a negative times a negative is positive. If you reject the distributive property, them a positive times a positive is positive, a negative times a negative is negative, and a negative times a positive cannot be resolved.

In a similar manner, I like to adopt different assumptions about religion sometimes, and see what the conclusions are.

I have difficulty with claiming all of mathematics is dogmatic knowledge. Notwithstanding my dislike of the term (dogmatic knowledge) I observe that there are some who seem to dogmatically glom onto a lot of things when it suits their purposes. But I prefer to think of mathematics as a tool. Now, I agree that one may accept or disregard 13 axioms, etc. and thus the tool can be used to prove anything given suitable premises. But then if one is honest one checks the results against the real world to see if the mathematical "proof" is true. 

Similarly, I dislike using the word faith with regard to mathematics (but I know some people want to use it and I can allow them that choice). More importantly, I think we are equivocating if we express our confidence in mathematics as faith and then compare it to our faith in a religious belief. I think they just aren't the same thing. 

Edited by Harrison

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On 11/23/2019 at 5:12 AM, MarginOfError said:

Um, well, we agree. I know I've said it somewhere before, but I believe doubt is an inherent part of faith. Where one exists, the other must also. 

I know many here will (and have) argued that with me, but they almost always argue from a different set of assumptions and definitions, which lead them to a different conclusion.

But at its core, all of mathematics is what you call dogmatic knowledge and rational faith. The real number system is built on top of 13 axioms that are accepted without proof. Those axioms greatly impact the outcome of theorems. For instance, if you accept the distributive property of multiplication over addition, then a negative times a negative is positive. If you reject the distributive property, them a positive times a positive is positive, a negative times a negative is negative, and a negative times a positive cannot be resolved.

In a similar manner, I like to adopt different assumptions about religion sometimes, and see what the conclusions are.

Which of the 13 axioms implies that the distributive property of multiplication is over the distributive property of addition?  The binary operations of addition and the binary operations of multiplication are well defined and the binary operation of multiplication is an extension of the binary operation of addition in that the operation of multiplication is defined through the binary operation of addition.  The axiom for the distributive property of multiplication and addition are defined separably in the real number system.   To preserve the distributive properties of multiplication and addition - the definition of the distributive properties of multiplication and addition must be preserved for both multiplication and addition for real number as existing on in the set of real number (meaning having a place on the real number line).

 

The Traveler

Edited by Traveler

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On 11/30/2019 at 7:22 PM, Harrison said:

I have difficulty with claiming all of mathematics is dogmatic knowledge. Notwithstanding my dislike of the term (dogmatic knowledge) I observe that there are some who seem to dogmatically glom onto a lot of things when it suits their purposes. But I prefer to think of mathematics as a tool. Now, I agree that one may accept or disregard 13 axioms, etc. and thus the tool can be used to prove anything given suitable premises. But then if one is honest one checks the results against the real world to see if the mathematical "proof" is true. 

Similarly, I dislike using the word faith with regard to mathematics (but I know some people want to use it and I can allow them that choice). More importantly, I think we are equivocating if we express our confidence in mathematics as faith and then compare it to our faith in a religious belief. I think they just aren't the same thing. 

For most people, the use of mathematics is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge. Most people haven't and couldn't prove even some of the most rudimentary theorems of mathematics.  Thus, their reliance on it to do anything as simple as balance a checkbook is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge.  They can make use of the tool, it works for them, but they can't really explain it.

7 hours ago, Traveler said:

Which of the 13 axioms implies that the distributive property of multiplication is over the distributive property of addition?  The binary operations of addition and the binary operations of multiplication are well defined and the binary operation of multiplication is an extension of the binary operation of addition in that the operation of multiplication is defined through the binary operation of addition.  The axiom for the distributive property of multiplication and addition are defined separably in the real number system.   To preserve the distributive properties of multiplication and addition - the definition of the distributive properties of multiplication and addition must be preserved for both multiplication and addition for real number as existing on in the set of real number (meaning having a place on the real number line).

 

The Traveler

I think you're misunderstanding. There is no distributive property of addition. There are axioms for the commutative property of both addition and multiplication. There is only one distributive property that distributes multiplication over addition. e.g. a * (b + c) = a * b + a * c. 

https://suchanutter.net/ItCanBeShown/real-number-system.html#the-field-of-real-numbers

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On 11/30/2019 at 5:22 PM, Harrison said:

I have difficulty with claiming all of mathematics is dogmatic knowledge. Notwithstanding my dislike of the term (dogmatic knowledge) I observe that there are some who seem to dogmatically glom onto a lot of things when it suits their purposes. But I prefer to think of mathematics as a tool. Now, I agree that one may accept or disregard 13 axioms, etc. and thus the tool can be used to prove anything given suitable premises. But then if one is honest one checks the results against the real world to see if the mathematical "proof" is true. 

Similarly, I dislike using the word faith with regard to mathematics (but I know some people want to use it and I can allow them that choice). More importantly, I think we are equivocating if we express our confidence in mathematics as faith and then compare it to our faith in a religious belief. I think they just aren't the same thing. 

2 hours ago, MarginOfError said:

For most people, the use of mathematics is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge. Most people haven't and couldn't prove even some of the most rudimentary theorems of mathematics.  Thus, their reliance on it to do anything as simple as balance a checkbook is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge.  They can make use of the tool, it works for them, but they can't really explain it.

The point that we are discussing here is not a huge thing for me, so I don't want to appear dogmatic about it. :)  I hope my curiosity about your viewpoint and my interest in conversing is also interesting to you as I'm not about "proving you wrong". It seems apparent to me that you are much more knowledgeable than I am about math, and I respect your background. I read your remarks here and I think to myself, "I suppose I am like many if not most people. I use mathematics but I don't see how my use of it is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge." 

I think of mathematics similarly to the way I think of a table saw. It's useful. But I have no attitude regarding the way I use it or the principles I've learned for using it safely and effectively as being incontrovertibly true.  It just seems to work. Most people who haven't proven the most rudimentary theorems of mathematics probably got bored with it in Junior High school. It isn't that they can't, it's that they aren't interested. Why bother? I see little difference between this view of mathematics and a view of turning the ignition key, or changing my oil. I don't care how the car's electrical system works. I'm not interested at the moment at where the oil goes in my engine or how the parts work together--I just know from experience that changing my oil will save me money in the long run. Thus, I balance my checkbook because I want to keep track of my money. I use a little bit of rudimentary algebra if I want to change a recipe, or a bit of geometry when I do some landscaping, or a trig table when I want to build a certain kind of telescope. And I use a hammer when I want to drive a nail. What's dogmatic about this?

Maybe I'm guilty as charged, but it seems to me that my knowledge of mathematics, or of starting my car engine is more the very definition of pragmatic than of dogmatic. (Thanks for enduring my point of view--hope you don't find me obnoxious). :) 
 

Edited by Harrison

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3 hours ago, MarginOfError said:

For most people, the use of mathematics is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge. Most people haven't and couldn't prove even some of the most rudimentary theorems of mathematics.  Thus, their reliance on it to do anything as simple as balance a checkbook is the very definition of dogmatic knowledge.  They can make use of the tool, it works for them, but they can't really explain it.

I think you're misunderstanding. There is no distributive property of addition. There are axioms for the commutative property of both addition and multiplication. There is only one distributive property that distributes multiplication over addition. e.g. a * (b + c) = a * b + a * c. 

https://suchanutter.net/ItCanBeShown/real-number-system.html#the-field-of-real-numbers

You are correct concerning the distributive law and commutative law of addition and multiplication.  However the binary operation of multiplication is defined from the binary operation of addition.  This means that the distributive law is specific to the preservation of the binary operation of addition - which are also defined in integer and rational number systems which comprises what is called number theory.

What I am saying is that you can redefine the distributive law but not without the necessity of changing the binary operation of addition - which is consistent across all the defined number systems.  In your initial post you stated that the axioms cannot be proven - which is somewhat true.  But a changed axiom can be disproved - which is why defining the distributive law as being "multiplication over addition".  Since the binary operation of multiplication is defined by the binary operation of addition the converse of your implied multiplication over addition (which would be addition over multiplication is contrary to the definition of the binary operation of addition and a single counter example of failure proves the axiom false.

There is a principle in mathematical theory that requires axioms to be consistent and not contradictory which is implied in the concept of necessary and sufficient.   In other words - you are free to change any axiom you like.  But you cannot claim that such a change is necessary and sufficient to define a consistent theory within the definition of rhetorical logic. 

In short the real number system is said to be "well defined" - you cannot necessarily say that about what is created by changing the axiom of distribution preciously for the reason I stated that the binary operation of addition is no longer consistent.

The reason I bring this up is that so often (especially in religious discussions) assumptions are made that are contradictory to rhetorical logic within the landscape of other assumptions.  This is in part defined by the isotropic nature of rhetorical logic.  It would seem the logic behind such thinking is that G-d can do whatever he wants because he is G-d.  The flaw is that - by definition G-d is defined as a G-d of truth - which implies the acceptance of rhetorical logic and isotropic logic - that G-d therefore cannot lie and remain G-d because even wanting to lie is rhetorically inconsistent with the definition of a G-d of truth.  Such rhetorical flaws have created great discussions in the religious community - for the example -- free will verses determinism, the eternal nature of things that exist or are created to be eternal and so on.  And my favorite - that G-d defies logic and therefor logic cannot be used to define G-d - and then proceed to logically justify any possibility of G-d.

 

The Traveler

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