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In the Name of God بسم الله

The nature of faith

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(Moderators, please feel free to place this thread in another section, if need be.)

According to religion, faith is based on the authority of revelation. One believes and acts accordingly with or without the aid of reason. In other words, reason is secondary at best and ultimately irrelevant to faith itself. Faith does not need evidentiary support. One acts on the basis of the prophetic authority and that’s that, even if the basis for doing so, in a particular instance or case, cannot be discovered in this world. Empiricism, trial and error, is subordinated to spiritual insight.

For example, even though one can find numerous “naturalistic” reasons via reason as to why homosexual intercourse is a grave sin—human biology being an obvious one—those reasons would be secondary to the ultimate reason. One does not have faith, for example, because faith is, in certain situations, shown to be positively correlated with certain this-worldly benefits, e.g., health, fertility, income, and so on. Those benefits would be secondary rather than primary reasons.

On the contrary, if one were, say, seeking a practical application such as a medical treatment, one would not simply trust a medical specialist on the basis of an appeal to authority, i.e., “the doctor is appointed by Allah/is Allah’s representative and his specific knowledge of the unseen should be heeded, regardless of whether the reason for doing so is or is not evident/apparent to us.” In the everyday world, one would trust the medical specialist on the basis of his having mastered a testable, empirical science, whereas the internal mechanisms of the spiritual world are closed to us, except on the basis of revelation imparted to Allah’s chosen servants.

Another problem occurs when members of different faiths are attempting to convert one another. Each side will often refuse to examine sources from “outside the fold.” Even when exposed to new information, each side will tend to (re-)interpret the information in light of its respective faith. Each side, in turn, relies on sources of authority within the faith. Furthermore, as highlighted previously, (revealed) religion is based first and foremost on faith in authority.

Given that a complete faith has a political component, how may one, theoretically, convince another to (outwardly) adhere to certain rituals, on pain of death for apostasy, without knowing the ultimate or even proximate reason? For example, one may not know the underlying significance as to why one circumambulates the Kaaba in a certain manner, other than its being divinely commanded; yet one does so anyway, on the basis of faith in authority (revealed, prophetic tradition).

Why does faith require this subjective element: the faith in authority on a particular matter without knowing or seeing the (full) reason, or having access to an empirical way to measure it?

Furthermore, if one is arguing about faith, how does one persuade? After all, attachment to faith is as powerful as attachment to one’s blood-kin, if not more so. Rival faiths are just as sentimental and attached to their “inspired” traditions. Certain Christians, for example, will naturally reinterpret Islamic claims in light of their own faith’s authoritative tradition(s), just as certain Jews will do likewise, and so on. In the end, all centre on the crucial matter of faith, not reason.

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Hi , You have some points about procedures in introduction  of faith by any creed & sect but respectfully  I agree to a point , but on the other hand crucial  matter is both of faith & reason which if a faith can  not be proven by reason certainly is not a complete  faith which clearly Christian  preaching & Judaism  supermacy is based on denying  reasoning  which in similar fashion Islamic  preachers in sunni side have relied  on christian preaching procedure  although  their preaching contains some sort of reasoning which problem in Shia side which has both of faith & strong reasoning  is lack of well organized  preaching policy because  we don't  follow other procedures which has based on fooling  people   but on the other hand we don't  have good presenter & supportive team for new converts also in comparison with Sunni preachers we don't  have unlimited financial & political  support from both of Hawzas & embassies especially from Iran.

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14 hours ago, Northwest said:

According to religion, faith is based on the authority of revelation. One believes and acts accordingly with or without the aid of reason. In other words, reason is secondary at best and ultimately irrelevant to faith itself.

There is always a "reason" behind accepting the authority of revelation. 

There is always a "reason" behind accepting or rejecting anything. 

So my friend!!! Reason is not secondary, it is the very first thing which enables us to accept or reject anything. It is the revelation which informed this:

و يجعل الرجس على الذين لا يعقلون

10:100) 

The word يعقلون itself is sufficient for our guidance. Every sign, the Earth & whatever is on it, the heavens and whatever in it, are for our very ability to reason:

إِنَّ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلَافِ اللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ وَالْفُلْكِ الَّتِي تَجْرِي فِي الْبَحْرِ بِمَا يَنْفَعُ النَّاسَ وَمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ مِنْ مَاءٍ فَأَحْيَا بِهِ الْأَرْضَ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا وَبَثَّ فِيهَا مِنْ كُلِّ دَابَّةٍ وَتَصْرِيفِ الرِّيَاحِ وَالسَّحَابِ الْمُسَخَّرِ بَيْنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ لَآيَاتٍ لِقَوْمٍ يَعْقِلُونَ {164}

[Shakir 2:164] Most surely in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day, and the ships that run in the sea with that which profits men, and the water that Allah sends down from the cloud, then gives life with it to the earth after its death and spreads in it all (kinds of) animals, and the changing of the winds and the clouds made subservient between the heaven and the earth, there are signs for a people who understand.

Interestingly, the very revelation discloses another truth:

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمُ اتَّبِعُوا مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ قَالُوا بَلْ نَتَّبِعُ مَا أَلْفَيْنَا عَلَيْهِ آبَاءَنَا ۗ أَوَلَوْ كَانَ آبَاؤُهُمْ لَا يَعْقِلُونَ شَيْئًا وَلَا يَهْتَدُونَ {170}

[Shakir 2:170] And when it is said to them, Follow what Allah has revealed, they say: Nay! we follow what we found our fathers upon. What! and though their fathers had no sense at all, nor did they follow the right way.

Look at the story of Prophet Ibrahim (عليه السلام), just go through his arguments. So if anyone believes or have faith, for instance, that "Boeing 747" is his god, he need to use his builtin guidance system at the first place. In case, the guidance system is malfunctioning due to any reason, then we have Messengers who delivers the divine message or what you call "revelation".  Revelation is specifically to bring the reasoning faculty back on track and to further guide it. 

I hope you can understand the difference now.

Wassalam!!

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1 hour ago, Cool said:

There is always a "reason" behind accepting the authority of revelation. 

There is always a "reason" behind accepting or rejecting anything. 

So my friend!!! Reason is not secondary, it is the very first thing which enables us to accept or reject anything. It is the revelation...

On a case-by-case basis, that specific “reason” may or may not be backed up by the exercise of reason, that is, logic and/or empiricism. Faith is more than logic or empiricism.

My point is that reason ends with revelation. Once you accept revelation, you stop using reason to investigate it. Revelation is based on appeal to authority. Reason is secondary. Also, one cannot use empiricism to investigate the reason as to why revelation commands a specific ritual. While scientific empiricism is far from perfect, it does open an avenue to continuous testing, whereas spiritual mechanisms cannot be tested, only revealed (if at all, at least in this stage of existence).

1 hour ago, Cool said:

So if anyone believes or have faith, for instance, that "Boeing 747" is his god, he need to use his builtin guidance system at the first place. In case, the guidance system is malfunctioning due to any reason, then we have Messengers who delivers the divine message or what you call "revelation".  Revelation is specifically to bring the reasoning faculty back on track and to further guide it.

This, to me, seems a poor analogy. One cannot compare spiritual to material realities. First, no one who actually engineers or pilots a Boeing 747 treats the aircraft as the end-all and be-all of existence, only as a means to an end. Also, revelation is specifically designed to end the reasoning process by definitively declaring a specific spiritual practice or ritual to be the way to go. Scientific empiricism is never finalised, whereas revelation is final. One does not investigate a particular ritual, but merely carries it out.

As @Abu Nur once said, if the Supreme Being tells you to do something, you do it, even if the means to investigate properly are unavailable. That’s the difference between reason and revelation. I doubt that most religious believers abstain from illicit sexual intercourse because it is unhealthy (though indeed it is). They abstain because the Creator decreed that it be considered a grave sin, regardless of the “naturalistic” or “scientific” reasons. Once again, faith in authority of revelation > reason.

This does not necessarily exclude reason, of course, but rather regards it as a secondary rather than primary aid to faith. This brings me back to the example(s) that I mentioned in my original post: one would not rely on a doctor on the same basis that one would rely on religion. The doctor has a background in something measurable and tangible, whereas religion deals first and foremost with immeasurable and intangible qualities, in addition to measurable and tangible (secondary) aspects.

One would not use, say, Pascal’s wager to determine whether one should rely on a specific doctor to treat a specific medical problem. The nature of the problem is primarily distinct from that of the spiritual world.

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17 hours ago, Northwest said:

if the Supreme Being tells you to do something, you do it, even if the means to investigate properly are unavailable. That’s the difference between reason and revelation. I doubt that most religious believers abstain from illicit sexual intercourse because it is unhealthy (though indeed it is). They abstain because the Creator decreed that it be considered a grave sin, regardless of the “naturalistic” or “scientific” reasons. Once again, faith in authority of revelation > reason.

Hi your analogy is wrong because you are analysing Islam likewise Christanity while Islam has based on both of revelation & accepting  reasoning but on the other hand Christanity & other religions have based on denying resoning in name of revelation however majority of Muslims follow revelation without asking for reason because of lack of education & knowledge which rest of Muslim sects except Shia Islam has relied on revelation than reason while in Shia Islam knowledgeable people likewise well educated scholars & Marjas can find reason behind some  revelation while on the other hand Wahabism/Salafism is based on relying on revelation & denying reason .

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17 hours ago, Northwest said:

Faith is more than logic or empiricism.

Salam Brother!!

It may be more than logic & wisdom (instead of empiricism) but it contains both or we can say that its way goes through logic & wisdom. 

And that is why we see that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) has assigned three duties to His Apostle:

1. Recite for us the verses of Quran

2. Purify us

3. Teach us The Book & the Wisdom.

17 hours ago, Northwest said:

My point is that reason ends with revelation 1.

Once you accept revelation, you stop using reason to investigate it.

1. And my point is that reason begins with revelation. 

Revelation can be used as "proposition", as a statement of truth and in that sense revelation is building block of logic. And revelation itself seems like logic, that's why a teacher  was deputed by the bestower of revelation to teach people book & wisdom. 

Actually revelation itself encourage us to investigate it & whatever around us. Now we may have different understanding of the term "investigate". 

17 hours ago, Northwest said:

Revelation is based on appeal to authority. 2

After your "reasoning faculty" leads you to understand someone as "authority". Example, Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) or revelation is not the authority for atheists. It is authority for me because my reasoning dictates me so and I accept it as authority. 

18 hours ago, Northwest said:

Also, one cannot use empiricism to investigate the reason as to why revelation commands a specific ritual. 

18 hours ago, Northwest said:

 

 

To investigate about specific ritual, your best tool for investigation is revelation itself. 

18 hours ago, Northwest said:

One cannot compare spiritual to material realities

There is nothing spiritual. What is spiritual? Spirits don't exist. And the same was the ideology of people who made idols of stone, wood or xyz and start worshiping their own handicrafts. So Boeing 747 is also a handicraft :)

18 hours ago, Northwest said:

Also, revelation is specifically designed to end the reasoning process by definitively declaring a specific spiritual practice or ritual to be the way to go 3

So does this mean, truth brings end to the reasoning process? 

Or do we always need truth, for starting up the reasoning process? 

I am not going further, till we come to any conclusion about the points raised by you and addressed by me.

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5 minutes ago, Cool said:

There is nothing spiritual. What is spiritual? Spirits don't exist.

Don't take me wrong here!!

I only want to emphasize by saying this that your acceptance of something as "spiritual" is not lacking the reason at all. 

And someone's "reasoning" takes them to materialism, for them there is nothing as spiritual.

So why something is spiritual for you? Can you please make me understand what is spirit and what is its chemical composition?

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On 10/26/2021 at 8:22 PM, Northwest said:

In the end, all centre on the crucial matter of faith, not reason.

Hi there.  I would suggest that the whole of life is based on faith.  Even the example you give about a doctor.  We don't go into his office and demand to see his certificates and investigate whether they are true or not.  (in fact there are many stories of so called doctors who have been practising under a false idenity or without experience).

I would also suggest that dispite faith beinging fundamental to a life walking with God, true faith is not afraid of reason.  As a follower of Jesus, I welcome historical investigation and critical anyalasis of the evidence and the documents I base my life on.  Trust and faith in Jesus the Messiah is rooted in an historical act - God stepping into time and space.

In your profile you call yourself an agnostic.  That must be a tramendous step of faith - to acept there is a god but unable to know anything about that being.  In my perspective you are operating under a greater degree of faith than I am.  My faith is confirmed by a 'God act' in history and in my own life and experience which sustains me each day.

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Thomas Aquinas once said faith is where “the intellect of the believer is convinced by Divine authority, so as to assent to what it sees not".

So he said "there is no faith without reason and there is no reason without faith". 

 

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Islam too mentions faith (emaan) as a thing which makes one certain. 

49:14] The dwellers of the desert say: We believe. Say: You do not believe but say, We submit; and faith has not yet entered into your hearts; and if you obey Allah and His Messenger, He will not diminish aught of your deeds; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

Faith resides in hearts and what is the status of those who allow faith to reside in their hearts:

49:15) The believers are only those who believe in Allah and His Messenger then they doubt not and struggle hard with their wealth and their lives in the way of Allah; they are the truthful ones.

These two verses lays down a brief definition and characteristic of faith.

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On 10/28/2021 at 8:30 AM, Cool said:

Salam Brother!!

It may be more than logic & wisdom (instead of empiricism) but it contains both or we can say that its way goes through logic & wisdom. 

And that is why we see that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) has assigned three duties to His Apostle:

1. Recite for us the verses of Quran

2. Purify us

3. Teach us The Book & the Wisdom.

1. And my point is that reason begins with revelation. 

Revelation can be used as "proposition", as a statement of truth and in that sense revelation is building block of logic. And revelation itself seems like logic, that's why a teacher was deputed by the bestower of revelation to teach people book & wisdom.

I do not deny that faith encompasses logic and wisdom, but instead argue that it subordinates logic and wisdom to faith. As you said, from a religious standpoint logic and wisdom are viewed through the prism of revelation rather than empiricism. Empirically based logic and wisdom is secondary to faith-based. Furthermore, as you admitted, revelation resembles logic but is not logic itself per se, though it involves or participates in a type of logic. Maybe I did not express myself well, but that is the point that I wished to enumerate. Maybe your point is that even empiricism involves a degree of faith, because even empiricism revolves around a certain degree of approximation, and in the approximation one must have faith. If I recall correctly, even some of the greatest modern scientists did acknowledge an element of faith involved that to some extent imitated but also distinguished itself from religious faith. That is because modern science, in part, revolves around empiricism rather than revelation. Faith-based science (“science” denoting a type of knowledge), by contrast, revolves around revelation.

On 10/28/2021 at 8:30 AM, Cool said:

Actually revelation itself encourage us to investigate it & whatever around us. Now we may have different understanding of the term "investigate".

I meant “investigate” in the sense embodied by empiricists. Ritual observance may or may not involve investigation of its veracity, but perhaps not in the empirical sense.

On 10/28/2021 at 8:30 AM, Cool said:

There is nothing spiritual. What is spiritual? Spirits don't exist.

I meant “spiritual” in the sense that a religious person would understand the realm of the spirit(s). Islam, like other religions, does believe in a spiritual realm and being(s).

On 10/28/2021 at 8:30 AM, Cool said:

So does this mean, truth brings end to the reasoning process? 

Or do we always need truth, for starting up the reasoning process? 

Yes, I meant that truth (revelation) brings an end to the empirically based reasoning process.

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On 10/28/2021 at 2:04 PM, Dave follower of The Way said:

In your profile you call yourself an agnostic. That must be a tremendous step of faith - to accept there is a god but unable to know anything about that being.

I chose “agnostic” because Deist was unavailable. I do believe in a Prime Mover (Creator) but am unaffiliated with a specific religion or Deen as of now.

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On 10/30/2021 at 12:46 PM, Northwest said:

I do not deny that faith encompasses logic and wisdom, but instead argue that it subordinates logic and wisdom to faith. As you said, from a religious standpoint logic and wisdom are viewed through the prism of revelation rather than empiricism. Empirically based logic and wisdom is secondary to faith-based. Furthermore, as you admitted, revelation resembles logic but is not logic itself per se, though it involves or participates in a type of logic. Maybe I did not express myself well, but that is the point that I wished to enumerate. Maybe your point is that even empiricism involves a degree of faith, because even empiricism revolves around a certain degree of approximation, and in the approximation one must have faith. If I recall correctly, even some of the greatest modern scientists did acknowledge an element of faith involved that to some extent imitated but also distinguished itself from religious faith. That is because modern science, in part, revolves around empiricism rather than revelation. Faith-based science (“science” denoting a type of knowledge), by contrast, revolves around revelation.

I meant “investigate” in the sense embodied by empiricists. Ritual observance may or may not involve investigation of its veracity, but perhaps not in the empirical sense.

I meant “spiritual” in the sense that a religious person would understand the realm of the spirit(s). Islam, like other religions, does believe in a spiritual realm and being(s).

Yes, I meant that truth (revelation) brings an end to the empirically based reasoning process.

@Cool

Did I address your inquiries? Please feel free to respond to the points that I enumerated above, if needed and as time permits.

Regarding science and faith: admittedly, as a native Westerner I am biased, just as non-Westerns are similarly prejudiced, based on their upbringing and context. Historically, in the West religion and science have operated on divergent trajectories. When religion prevailed in the West, science stagnated. When science gained the upper hand, religion declined. On the other hand, in the Islamic “Golden Age,” religion and science operated in tandem. While the marriage of science and faith worked in the Islamic civilisation, I question whether it would suit the Western environment. Western Caucasians, unlike Mediterranean Semites, tend to be innately drawn toward extremist bifurcations. During the Middle Ages Western Christendom operated on a mystical basis, hence irrational belief in the Trinity and opposition to Judaeo-Islamic “legalism” such as is enshrined in the Mosaic Law. Afterward, during the Renaissance and Enlightenment the West operated on a positivist, utilitarian basis that replaced faith with a belief in natural rights, resulting in a decline in morality but an increase in scientific progress. Over millennia relatively few Caucasians have converted to either Judaism or Islam, so there seems to be some biological as well as cultural predilection toward the legacy of Hellenism: mystical polytheism and an addiction to the Platonic “ideal“ as expressed approximately in material forms, hence the concept of “incarnation.”

On another, related note: one potential problem with religious faith in general is that excludes the use of independent reasoning, which can lead to “misguidance“ as defined by clerical authorities and sacred traditions. Societies imbued with a religious mentality, whether invested in religion or transferred to a secular ideology (i.e., scientism), often seem incapable of envisioning a social order in which the masses, deemed sheeplike, are not controlled by a ruling, elite minority with a monopoly on “true” knowledge. Historically, human beings have been organised along tribal, racial, and sectarian lines that prescribe a kind of relative morality: that which benefits the group of “insiders” and that which does not. What is considered vice when practiced toward a fellow member of the group is considered virtue when directed toward the outsider. Therefore, the group tends to be hostile toward the notion of universal rather than group-specific morality. For example, it is a grave sin for an Orthodox Jew to steal from, spy on, or lie to a fellow Orthodox Jew, but often a virtue to cheat, snitch on, or deceive non-Orthodox (“goyim“), if doing so benefits the Orthodox in-group. All that matters is what benefits the group in relation to outsiders; in short, the group’s approach to outsiders is amoral, and often immoral (though not considered as such by the group) compared to the rules governing behaviour between members of the group itself.

(Sunni Muslims in the West, to my knowledge, often operate on a similar basis, exploiting privileges granted by globalist Western elites [via open borders, free welfare, etc.] while cynically crying about Western “racism” and “Islamophobia,” even though immigrants are often favoured more by certain Western regimes than native-born citizens. Anything that benefits the in-group at the expense of outsiders is sanctioned and considered just, so Machiavellian scheming tends to comprise a significant component of the in-group’s behaviour. Of course, none of these Sunni immigrants mentions the fact that Sunnis treat non-Sunnis far more harshly than Western “infidels” treat Sunni migrants. That is why the “secular, decadent” West is still often more hospitable to religious minorities such as Shias than Sunni-majority countries often are. Intensely religious populations often tend to be far more intolerant of rival religious groups than of irreligious atheists. Case in point: during the Russian Revolution and Civil War [1917–24] the Roman Catholic Church backed the Bolsheviks against the Russian Orthodox Church, sensing an opportunity for the destruction of Rome’s “schismatic“ rivals. Understandably, given its ruthlessly cynical political arrangements, the Roman Church has now succumbed to the very secularist forces that it allied with throughout history against “heretics“ and “apostates.”)

Obviously, the religious mentality, whether generated in a religious or secular context, is based on emotional ties comparable to those inherent in kinship, especially biological, i.e., the bond between child and parent. Fundamentally, such a mechanism is often at odds with reason, though not entirely.

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One problem with the religious mentality—as opposed to religion per se—is that it all too often relies on authoritative pronouncements rather than reasoned investigation. This does negate the value of religion, but it demands a rational religion. Unfortunately, all too often the average “believer,” whether religious or secular, merely trusts assertions and commands without understanding the rationale behind them. While there are many learned Shia ulema, the Shia laity often, for instance, merely abstain from, say, prohibited acts because “Allah commanded.” By contrast, a rational faith, while not disputing the value of the command, would also undertake scientific and logical inquests to discover Allah’s why—why, for instance, consumption of intoxicants is harmful and therefore sinful (against oneself). Otherwise, Shia Islam would be no different from any other creed that demands unconditional, unreasoning acceptance of its claims. Of course, science and logic may not immediately discover the reasons as to why something is haram, but a rational faith would not preclude one from attempting to elucidate scientific and logical explanations. Otherwise, one would be no different from Trinitarian Christians who “accept” the Trinity because “God says in sources X, Y, and Z.” Such an approach would be anti-intellectual.

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1 hour ago, Northwest said:

One problem with the religious mentality—as opposed to religion per se—is that it all too often relies on authoritative pronouncements rather than reasoned investigation.

I don't have the time or the skill set to investigate every claim of my "religion" in detail.  But I can trust those who do and who explain and show the foundations are firm.  However, I do have the privilage of living a life with God by my side.  I live out more than just a "religion", my faith is more than just assenting to facts, I walk daily with Jesus my friend, guided by the Holy Spirit and experience the Father's love.

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1 hour ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

I don't have the time or the skill set to investigate every claim of my "religion" in detail.  But I can trust those who do and who explain and show the foundations are firm.  However, I do have the privilage of living a life with God by my side.  I live out more than just a "religion", my faith is more than just assenting to facts, I walk daily with Jesus my friend, guided by the Holy Spirit and experience the Father's love.

@Dave follower of The Way

If your faith is not based on facts, then how are you able to distinguish between objectivity and subjectivity? Moreover, a faith that is not based on rationality is fundamentally severed from deeds. Deeds have no impact on one’s salvation, because one’s salvation is already provided for, by the sacrifice of the “Son of God” in one’s stead. Also, Trinitarian Christians often irrationally object to the strictures imposed by the Mosaic Law that are also accepted by Islam, i.e., abstention from impure food and drink. Even if one does not necessarily believe in Judaism or Islam, one can find value in many of their precepts, especially if those precepts can be proven by science and logic. For example, certain animals are known to contain harmful bacteria, so in this respect Judaeo-Islamic dietary strictures are actually healthy and beneficial. Studies have shown that circumcision is a boon to one‘s hygiene, so even if one is a “Trinitarian” Christian one should at least be open to circumcision. Why do many Trinitarian Christians object to things that would actually provide innumerable, practical, this-worldly—if not otherworldly—benefits? Whether or not one is a “believer,” wouldn’t one want to abstain from eating, say, pork if science and logic demonstrate that pork is harmful to one’s health? Even atheists and agnostics have found much to appreciate in the rationalistic and legalistic tradition of Judaeo-Islamic civilisation. The same atheists and agnostics (including figures of the Western Enlightenment such as Voltaire) have also been able to apprehend the rational case against the concept of the Trinity. Why are atheists and agnostics able to relate to aspects of Judaism and Islam better than many Trinitarian Christians?

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Salam,

There are 3 natures of faith for many muslims:

1. Just trust and adhere what been revealed in Holy Quran and hadiths.  No question asked.  Seems easier to most people.

2. Demand more than just trust,  they want reasoning, scientific evidences, rational, facts and objectivity. Seems harder to most people.

3.  EAGER for more than what # 1 and 2 can offer, they want to witness the true nature of it. 

Example:

The #1 group will not steal because Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) prohibited it. They just obey the directive.

The #2 group will not steal because Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) prohibited it and based on facts/reasons / studies that stealing causes negative effects. 

The #3 group believes as #1 and #2, and will not satisfied until they witness the true nature of the act of stealing as revealed by Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) to them.  Another example, anyone who witnesses the true nature of Hell, he will never get close to doing sins.

Witnessing the true nature of things/acts will guide us to the right path. 

All the 3 natures of faith are commendable and will depend on our sincere struggle,  situation and Mercy of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) for our nature of faith to reach the level of at #1, #2 or #3.

Do not under estimate all the 3 natures of faith. They are all good.

Wallahualam. 

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According to religion, faith is based on the authority of revelation.

ذَٰلِكَ الْكِتَابُ لَا رَيْبَ ۛ فِيهِ ۛ هُدًى لِلْمُتَّقِينَ {2}

[Shakir 2:2] This Book, there is no doubt in it, is a guide to those who guard (against evil).
[Pickthal 2:2] This is the Scripture whereof there is no doubt, a guidance unto those who ward off (evil).
[Yusufali 2:2] This is the Book; in it is guidance sure, without doubt, to those who fear Allah;

الَّذِينَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِالْغَيْبِ وَيُقِيمُونَ الصَّلَاةَ وَمِمَّا رَزَقْنَاهُمْ يُنْفِقُونَ {3}

[Shakir 2:3] Those who believe in the unseen and keep up prayer and spend out of what We have given them.
[Pickthal 2:3] Who believe in the Unseen, and establish worship, and spend of that We have bestowed upon them;
[Yusufali 2:3] Who believe in the Unseen, are steadfast in prayer, and spend out of what We have provided for them;

-----

Quote

One believes and acts accordingly with or without the aid of reason. 

You and ALL Humans belief in the unseen, which is based on the Book of the Nature ( You and what in inside you and around you). You all believe in the revelations of the Book of Nature. Your reason, has limits and at that point you say, what we see, hear, feel and touch leads me to believe that there is a Creator/Designer/the Original Source to ALL this we are able to comprehend based on our limited intellect/knowledge. 

After that, you have to based on reason/intellect/knowledge believe that there is Guidance and with out it your internal and external systems will not function properly. 

You must also have Guidance. Whoever created you must provide you with Guidance in All aspects of life, like your internal systems are guided. 

Once you recognize the Divine Guide, you submit. This submission is based on Intellect/Knowledge/Wisdom not mere imagination/or emotions. 

Now, let us move away from God and Prophet. for argument sake. 

Even from a perspective of just theories presented by man. Find me a Man like Muhammad ibn Abdullah who wrote a comprehensive  thesis on life and who to live it in a book called Qur'an. 

You may find some experts in some particular discipline who may be an expert and wrote a book on a particular topic. But to have a Comprehensive Plan/ Social, Ethical, Moral, Legal, Governance etc... A Complete guide to Humanity. 

Not only Comprehensive Life plan was presented, it was implemented and protected by Ali ibn Abi Talib. 

https://www.al-islam.org/voice-human-justice-sautul-adalatil-insaniyah-george-jordac/un-charter-human-rights

Also read 

https://www.al-islam.org/nahjul-balagha-part-1-sermons

You will see that people may have ideas and written books or may have given speeches. However, to implement these ideas in their life and  laid their lives for them. 

You will reach one conclusion, no plan exists which can rival it even in 2021. As you see the state of the world even when best minds have implemented their theories in societies and we see the chaos in social life. 

Above , will lead you to one conclusion. These are the divine guides and as such after reading their books we submit to their intellect/knowledge/wisdom/insight. 

This submission is not accepting without intellect. Nor is the Obedience to the commands just emotional thing. 

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On 12/9/2021 at 2:20 PM, Northwest said:

If your faith is not based on facts, then how are you able to distinguish between objectivity and subjectivity?

Hi There Mr Northwest - I think you missread my post!

I said "my faith was more than assenting to facts."  This doesn't mean there aren't any facts.  There are many facts which form a foundation for my faith.  Facts like the life, death and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah, facts about the growth of the first group of belivers in Jesus dispite being a persicuted minority, facts about the reliability and trustworthiness of the writings in the Hebrew Bible and in the books of the New Testament, facts about the wonder of creation and the complexity of the universe.  I could go on and on but there is more to faith than these facts.  I have a daily encounter with the God of the universe.  He engages with me and through Jesus the Messiah and the Pure Holy Spirit I have been transformed and am enpowered to live a life worthy of him and his calling.

On 12/9/2021 at 2:20 PM, Northwest said:

Deeds have no impact on one’s salvation,

I would suggest that salvation has an impact on deeds.  I life with out godly deeds shows that a person is not walking in the consiquences of God working in their life.  Jesus the Messiah said "A good tree can not bear bad fruit nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. - by their fruit you will know them."

Your examples of things "Christians don't do" is missing the point.  None of the things you mention are prohibited to Christians.  If a follower of Jesus wants to eat certain food or abstain from certain practeces or even, dare I say, get circumcised. they are free to do those things.  The question is what are they depending on to gain a relationship with God?  If obeying or not obeying certain regulations are what they are relying on, then they are missing God's provided road to salvation.  People who trust in their own deeds - however good and right - will miss God's best because God has provided a road which we need to trust in.  After that, good deeds are important and expected.  As a thank you offering, not as a "get me into heaven" card.

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On 12/10/2021 at 10:30 PM, layman said:

There are 3 natures of faith for many muslims:

Can I respectfully suggest that there is a forth way?

Receiving from God his Spirit's power living within to give the ability and desire to do God's will and live God's way.

This faith is based on a real encounter with the living God which transforms a life and removes shame and opens the door to become a member of God's family and to be called a friend of God.

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13 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Your examples of things "Christians don't do" is missing the point.  None of the things you mention are prohibited to Christians.  If a follower of Jesus wants to eat certain food or abstain from certain practeces or even, dare I say, get circumcised. they are free to do those things.  The question is what are they depending on to gain a relationship with God?  If obeying or not obeying certain regulations are what they are relying on, then they are missing God's provided road to salvation.

@Dave follower of The Way

By that logic one could commit adultery or other designated sins on the basis that “obeying certain regulations” misses “God’s provided road to salvation.” You effectively reduce divine guidance to the Decalogue or Ten Commandments, resulting in a very narrow, arid, reductionist belief-system. Also, if certain practices such as circumcision, even if deemed technically unnecessary for salvation, are shown to have positive this-worldly effects such as hygienic benefits, then why would one not take the opportunity to adopt some of those beneficial practices, if only for this-worldly boons?

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On 12/18/2021 at 9:43 AM, Northwest said:

“God’s provided road to salvation.”

This road is about God's transformation of the idividual and community through the power of his Holy Spirit.  I have never mentioned the ten commandments as the way to God.  God expects a moral and upright life from his followers and that life is summarized in the Ten Commandments.  But that kind of life isn't the road to God, it is the outworking of a grateful transformed life. 

If a person want's to include in their life actions which have hygienic benefits - that's great, but it is not compulsary nor is itthe way to be rescued from our shameful position before Almighty God.

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2 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

God expects a moral and upright life from his followers and that life is summarised in the Ten Commandments. But that kind of life isn't the road to God, it is the outworking of a grateful transformed life.

@Dave follower of The Way

Actions, if consistently repeated, tend to change one’s internal spirit, unless one is a trained actor. For example, if one engages in a certain exercise for a certain period of time, the repetition of the act itself tends to instil a change in one’s overall perspective, mood, and health, however subtle. (After all, every action has a certain spiritual dimension and character of its own, and in the Abrahamic tradition mind, body, and spirit are not viewed separately, but as part of a whole, the individual soul.) To suggest otherwise is to render all self-discipline meaningless and substitute internally contradictory and subjective experience—that is, mysticism—for objective, external performance. It is also to lie to oneself, for it is demonstrably disproven on a daily basis. For Christians, the real problem with the Mosaic Law is that it is demanding and exacting, yet even Prophet Jesus admitted that the Law is difficult to uphold; but from another perspective its very rigidity is a blessing, for the greater the effort and sacrifice required, the greater the benefit and reward received. Also, this implies that the reward for following even one part of the Law extremely well is greater than if one were follow all parts of the Law imperfectly.

2 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

If a person want's to include in their life actions which have hygienic benefits - that's great, but it is not compulsory nor is it the way to be rescued from our shameful position before Almighty God.

You act as though one’s health is somehow separate from spiritual purity. A logical religion would presuppose that being healthy enables one to better fulfil the Divine purpose and therefore place a premium on hygiene. By your logic, if someone is addicted to drugs, which in turn impact his entire life, then his own efforts to combat addiction are not only meaningless, but ultimately unrelated to his own spiritual salvation. Your outlook is fatalistic and tends to denigrate the importance of self-improvement, as though one is predestined to be, say, an addict and must be spiritually “cleansed” through some Divine mystery, i.e., the sacrifice of a demigod on a cross. (By definition the Christian view of Prophet Jesus as a hypostatic god-man presupposes a demigod, for a human nature cannot be simultaneously divine, as the hypostasis envisions, and the three persons of the Trinity are not equal to one another.)

It also neglects the fact that a logical religion emphasises the whole person and does not view anything in isolation. In other words, one’s physical health has an impact on one’s spiritual health, or on one’s ability to improve oneself spiritually. Good hygiene by itself may not represent the way to spiritual betterment, but it is definitely an integral component of a sound spiritual programme, and no logical religion would be complete without an emphasis on hygiene as part of its programme. The very fact that you are alive to type a response requires some degree of care of one’s personal wellbeing on a daily basis, including hygiene. Logically, anything that helps extends one‘s lifespan via improved hygiene must also be spiritually good and (re-)commendable to one’s fellow-men as well. Do you consume cocaine, Dave? According to your “logic” your decision to do so or not would have no intrinsic bearing on your eventual salvation.

The problem with the religious mindset, as opposed to religion per se, is that it encourages people to be complacent and arrogant. It teaches men to become trained parrots rather than critical thinkers. Unfortunately, many (Trinitarian) Christians tend to act like trained parrots who regurgitate talking points but do not engage intellectually with opposing viewpoints, much less engage in rational self-reflection. The problem is that the religious mindset relies on the following points: a) that God does not have to be logical, or follow a logic that man can understand; b) man should accept revelation without understanding or seeking to understand it; and c) investigation is forbidden. If, say, God is said to sit on a throne, we are not allowed to contemplate the nature of the throne or the action, since it is not explicitly given in the available source(s). If one accepts miracles without understanding, then the road is open to potentially accepting such “incoherence” or “illogic“ as the Trinity.

Belief in miracles is but part of a stepping-stone to a non-rational worldview that could potentially lead to such dogma as that of the Trinity. It is therefore double-edged danger.

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Regarding the OT: another complication is the matter of fate. If in fact our eternal fate is already decided by our decision in the World of Particles, before we came to be born here on Earth, then in fact are we unable to change our eternal destiny during this life? Is life in this world more akin to a film-reel? For example, is an illegitimate child someone who already chose to reject Allah and His Representative(s) in the World of Particles, and is thus incapable of choosing to be better than his sinful parents? Some studies suggest that up to 80% of our IQ is genetically inherited. So if one person, say, is less capable of controlling his impulses than another due to genetic limitations, does that make him less of a moral agent, since to be virtuous one must, as a precondition, be able to control one’s impulses? Is he on a lower spiritual grade than, say, someone who has been endowed with more of a genetic capacity to be able to learn to control his impulses to a higher degree? Are low-IQ people being punished for their choice(s) in the World of Particles and thus cannot achieve salvation, or at least not as high a spiritual state in the Hereafter as higher-IQ individuals? Of course, not every high-IQ person is righteous, but to be righteous does one need to have a high IQ? I am just thinking aloud, as I have been struggling with these kinds of questions. What do ahadith say about the ability of illegitimate children and low-IQ individuals to enter Paradise?

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On 12/10/2021 at 11:30 PM, layman said:

Salam,

There are 3 natures of faith for many muslims:

1. Just trust and adhere what been revealed in Holy Quran and hadiths.  No question asked.  Seems easier to most people.

2. Demand more than just trust,  they want reasoning, scientific evidences, rational, facts and objectivity. Seems harder to most people.

3.  EAGER for more than what # 1 and 2 can offer, they want to witness the true nature of it. 

All the 3 natures of faith are commendable and will depend on our sincere struggle,  situation and Mercy of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) for our nature of faith to reach the level of at #1, #2 or #3.

Do not under estimate all the 3 natures of faith. They are all good.

Wallahualam. 

@layman

Obviously, all three natures comprise parts of an authentic faith. Problematically, however, most adherents, as you mentioned, tend to go by the first approach and thus refuse to be informed by the latter two. This tendency is endemic not just to Muslims, but also to believers in all faiths, as well as secularists who fetishise scientism and pseudoscience. Ideally, all true faith, while not excluding revelation, should be in accord with reasoning and experience, thereby reflecting intelligence. In other words, one should not base one’s faith solely on revelation, but also on reasoning and experience. Otherwise, mere belief in revelation, rooted in authority, is no different from the approach of other faiths such as Trinitarian Christianity, Orthodox Judaism, Vedic Hinduism, Buddhism, and so on.

Unfortunately, religion, for the most part, tends to reflect rather than transcend human limitations, as does dogmatic, that is, “hard,” secularism (via scientism) in practice. Once faith becomes blind, that is, unreceptive or untethered from independent reasoning, it quickly comes into conflict with hard realities, including the subjectivity of life. On the one hand, dogmatic truths cannot be questioned; on the other, our daily lives depend on the use of independent reasoning, including the scientific method. Otherwise, the forces that hold up buildings and power hypersonic missiles can be reduced to mere “magic” or supernatural activity that is unlocked by “spells” known as mathematics. If evolution is false, then one could well put much of scientific knowledge, including physics, into question.

This, of course, does not imply that evolution is true, but it does expose inconsistency. If a religious believer may deny evolution, then there is nothing that should logically prevent him, at least in theory, from denying heliocentric theory, germ theory, nuclear physics, the periodic table, and much besides. There is no clear demarcation between dogma and reality, unless one is willing to engage in mental gymnastics, by simultaneously holding that evolution is false but, say, DNA exists, even though the latter is ultimately based on modelling and is hardly better substantiated than, say, evolution. I do respect religious believers who are consistent, i.e., strict Orthodox Jews who deny both evolution and the sphericity of Earth, to not mention heliocentric theory. It is easier to deny science wholesale.

Personally, why do you suspect that most people struggle to attain a faith that is based on reasoning and evidence as well as revelation? Why do “reasoning, scientific evidence, rationality, facts, and objectivity” fail to motivate most people, except on a very selective basis? After all, most observant Trinitarian Christians continue to persist in rationalising the Trinity, based solely on the received wisdom of the Church, and do not seek to apply reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity, all of which would lead to disbelief in the Trinity. If exposed to new information, they will simply reinterpret it in light of their tradition. Most Muslims, Jews, and others operate on the same basis, as do secularists who blindly trust appointed bodies, e.g., medical “expertise” on vaccines and so on.

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Here is a vivid illustration of the religious mentality in action. The Web site claims that Muslims and other unitarians “mischaracterise” the Trinity as a belief in three divinities. However, monotheists do not claim that the Trinity claims to believe in three deities, but rather argue on the basis of logic that three divine Persons cannot simultaneously be one and the same. A commentator later tried to inquire as to how Prophet Jesus could simultaneously be part of the Godhead yet request his followers to pray to the Father alone. One of the Webmasters subsequently enjoined the questioner to correct his “uninformed” and “inaccurate,” so-called “mischaracterisation” by reviewing Trinitarian explanations via tracts. The typical religious mentality is at work: the Trinitarians do not reason, but simply regurgitate and preach.

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13 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

@Northwest I wonder, with due respect, if you would consider your last four posts on this thread to be preaching or not?

With due respect: your rejoinder doesn’t address a single point and also ignores the fact that several of my posts contain questions. Preachers don’t ask questions.

Why do you Trinitarians despise independent reasoning and logic? Why don’t you use your God-given intellect to question your priests and popes? After all, if you would discard the Church’s commentary, you would arrive at a position on the Trinity that is basically Judaeo-Islamic. Your religious mentality encourages sheeplike behaviour while despising self-improvement and making excuses by relying on vicarious atonement/expiation via the sacrifice of a hypostatic being. Your worldview is fatalistic and does not link personal self-improvement to eternal salvation, viewing the two as separate. According to you whether a person is addicted to drugs or not doesn’t have any intrinsic bearing on his salvation, because overcoming addiction, like adopting circumcision for hygienic benefits, is not compulsory and has no intrinsic bearing on one’s spiritual state.

Please do not confuse bluntness with personal hatred, as an aside. Sometimes the truth does hurt.

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On 1/12/2022 at 5:03 PM, Northwest said:

Personally, why do you suspect that most people struggle to attain a faith that is based on reasoning and evidence as well as revelation? Why do “reasoning, scientific evidence, rationality, facts, and objectivity” fail to motivate most people, except on a very selective basis? After all, most observant Trinitarian Christians continue to persist in rationalising the Trinity, based solely on the received wisdom of the Church, and do not seek to apply reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity, all of which would lead to disbelief in the Trinity. If exposed to new information, they will simply reinterpret it in light of their tradition. Most Muslims, Jews, and others operate on the same basis, as do secularists who blindly trust appointed bodies, e.g., medical “expertise” on vaccines and so on.

@layman ^

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56 minutes ago, Northwest said:

Christians continue to persist in rationalising the Trinity, based solely on the received wisdom of the Church, and do not seek to apply reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity, all of which would lead to disbelief in the Trinity.

On 1/13/2022 at 9:34 AM, Northwest said:

Why do you Trinitarians despise independent reasoning and logic? Why don’t you use your God-given intellect to question your priests and popes? After all, if you would discard the Church’s commentary, you would arrive at a position on the Trinity that is basically Judaeo-Islamic. Your religious mentality encourages sheeplike behaviour while despising self-improvement and making excuses by relying on vicarious atonement/expiation via the sacrifice of a hypostatic being. Your worldview is fatalistic and does not link personal self-improvement to eternal salvation, viewing the two as separate. According to you whether a person is addicted to drugs or not doesn’t have any intrinsic bearing on his salvation, because overcoming addiction, like adopting circumcision for hygienic benefits, is not compulsory and has no intrinsic bearing on one’s spiritual state.

These comments show a severe degree of ignorance of the teaching and research, the academic thinking and debate entered into by Christians down the ages.  There are many books and writings of Christians in all ages, which apply reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity in their seeking to understand the Trinity and what it means for our daily life and spirituality.

You mention Judaeo-Islamic monotheisim.  I would suggest that Jewish monothesism and Islamic monotheisim are understood differently.  The Jewish Scriptures contain many stories, hymns and prophesies that suggest an unity within God's uniquness.  And from this soil the Christian understanding of Jesus the Messiah and The Holy Spirit was able to grow and develop.

Your comment about fatalism shows a complete lack of understanding of the power of God to transform lives and give the power to overcome adiction and temptation.  By rejecting "vicarious atonement" (someone offering themselves in the place of another to recieve a welcome into God's family) you are setting people as greater than God.  You are suggesting that people are able to do enough stuff to please God.  This shows an ignorence of God's perfectly high standards and the depth of dirty shame people have brought on themselves and God by our pride and rebelion.

Agnostics generally believe in a God who is distant and unknowable, if this is your position have you arrived there through appling reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity?  If God is unknowable all our rationality will never help us to know him.  But if God is immanent and knowable then what a joy and privilage to be able to journey with him through the challenges and joys of this life and on into the next!

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3 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

These comments show a severe degree of ignorance of the teaching and research, the academic thinking and debate entered into by Christians down the ages.  There are many books and writings of Christians in all ages, which apply reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity in seeking to understand the Trinity and what it means for our daily life and spirituality.

@Dave follower of The Way

3 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Your comment about fatalism shows a complete lack of understanding of the power of God to transform lives and give the power to overcome addiction and temptation.  By rejecting "vicarious atonement" (someone offering themselves in the place of another to receive a welcome into God's family) you are setting people as greater than God.  You are suggesting that people are able to do enough stuff to please God.

How did you come to the conclusion that the collective Church’s theological reasoning on this matter was sound? Perhaps I could then understand your position better.

3 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Agnostics generally believe in a God who is distant and unknowable, if this is your position have you arrived there through applying reason, science, rationality, facts, and objectivity?  If God is unknowable all our rationality will never help us to know him.  But if God is immanent and knowable then what a joy and privilege to be able to journey with him through the challenges and joys of this life and on into the next!

I am currently a Deist, but I could not find an option for “Deist” in my profile, nor could I type it in, so I chose “Agnosticism” instead.

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15 hours ago, Northwest said:

@layman ^

Personally, why do you suspect that most people struggle to attain a faith that is based on reasoning and evidence as well as revelation? Why do “reasoning, scientific evidence, rationality, facts, and objectivity” fail to motivate most people, except on a very selective basis? 

Salam,

These are few reasons,

1. Lack of sincerity of the person to be objective.

2. Not all people can face the truth that is against self developed and deep rooted belief.

3. Not all people at the same level of intellectual capacity.

4. Fail to see the consequences of True Faith.

Islam has to convince all humans at different level of understanding and intellectual capacities.

The ultimate message of Islam is to bring a person to the right path defined by Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). For that we need faith.  For a person with simple intellectual capacity, simple event can convince him/her and build the faith within the person.

Faith is not the end.  Faith is just a door that opens a person to the Path towards Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).  It is Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) that brings the person to Himself after he enters the door.  There are many doors at different heights that a person can open after that.  That is very much dependent on individual's sincerity (ikhlaas), level of conviction (yaqqin), struggle (jihad), patience (sabr) and reliance on God (tawakkal). All these are components of faith as defined by Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). Without any of the components we will fail in our journey toward Him (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).

Nothing comes easy when we choose Islam as our Faith.  All of us hasvto struggle to achieve the level that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) has specified for each person.  But  it will not be beyond our reach. MOST of us are distracted from the path that already laid for us based on our individual understanding and intellectual level and capacity.

If we can focus and remove distractions after entering the door of faith, then we will see how Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) guide us. The biggest distractions are syaitans, our own self and those humans who are clearly enemies of Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى).

Our reasoning and evidence can be our distractions too if we are not careful. Clear example was the case of Iblis.  He failed in his reasoning and evidences.   As a consequences, his intellect failed to see that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) wanted to increase His Mercy through Adam (عليه السلام) and not through him.

Wallahualam. 

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8 hours ago, layman said:

Salam,

These are few reasons,

1. Lack of sincerity of the person to be objective.

@layman

According to your perspective, is there any objective way to measure this, especially if people’s innate intellectual capacities differ, and even reasoning and evidence may fail?

8 hours ago, layman said:

2. Not all people can face the truth that is against self developed and deep rooted belief.

Couldn’t this, theoretically, serve as an argument against the nature of religious faith in general, or at least the religious mentality that forces reason to fit bounds of revelation?

For example, look at the manner in which religious or quasi-religious zeal drives Christians to believe in the Trinity, or Wahhabi–Salafi militants to engage in suicide-bombing.

Disentangling blind emotion from cool logic can be a very difficult thing to do when religious zeal, united to deeply rooted belief in revelation, is at stake, given that religion also believes in a deeper, spiritual logic that exists beyond time and space but may permeate the latter—the same spiritual logic that enabled the infallible Prophet Khidr to kill the child. Too many “religious” people (non-infallible) cannot distinguish between their delusions and genuine spiritual experience/revelation/insight. Of course, atheists and “hard” secularists fall into the same trap, more often than not due to faulty logic, but religion adds a volatile, unstable dynamic by introducing supernatural elements. From the previous link:

Quote

That same phrase, “fighting to make God’s word supreme,” is the same hadith cited eerily in a voice-over commentary in a video of a suicide bomb attack on a Baghdad hotel; a voice preaches that the holy warriors are fighting “li-takun kalimat Allah hiya al-ʿulyā, that God’s word might be supreme.” ... When we Muslims try to explain to others that jihad is to struggle in God’s path, to elevate His word, we are told: what use is this amorphous and volatile notion of “elevating God’s word” if it can be used to cause such mayhem and shed so much innocent blood? ...if it is obsolete, then so too are the notions of dying for glory, for kleos, for dom, for honor, for greatness, for duty. ... How many a family has been shattered by glory, by honor?

8 hours ago, layman said:

3. Not all people at the same level of intellectual capacity.

As you noted, “capacity” implies a fixed limit, the highest potential (zenith) that an individual may attain in his spiritual and other development throughout life.

8 hours ago, layman said:

The ultimate message of Islam is to bring a person to the right path defined by Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى). For that we need faith.  For a person with simple intellectual capacity, simple event can convince him/her and build the faith within the person.

But doesn’t there need to be an objective way to measure whether that “simple event” is truly a divine message instead of an illusion concocted by the nafs and subjectivity?

8 hours ago, layman said:

MOST of us are distracted from the path that already laid for us based on our individual understanding and intellectual level and capacity.

By “us” are you including yourself? I don’t doubt that I myself have the same problem, but obviously my presence here indicates at least some self-introspection.

8 hours ago, layman said:

Our reasoning and evidence can be our distractions too if we are not careful. Clear example was the case of Iblis.  He failed in his reasoning and evidences.   As a consequences, his intellect failed to see that Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) wanted to increase His Mercy through Adam (عليه السلام) and not through him.

But discernment is required when deciphering a situation in which one must determine whether one is being misled by one’s (limited) reasoning and evidence. One would need to be aware of the shortcoming in the first place, and obtaining that objective awareness is not as simple as it seems to be. After all, everyone “trusts” respective sources of emulation to some extent. I do my best to avoid trusting any single source of authority in its entirety, because too many people, “secular” or “religious,” end up falling into delusion by doing so.

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On 12/17/2021 at 9:11 PM, Dave follower of The Way said:

People who trust in their own deeds - however good and right - will miss God's best because God has provided a road which we need to trust in. After that, good deeds are important and expected. As a thank you offering, not as a "get me into heaven" card.

@Dave follower of The Way

The approach is self-defeating. One cannot trust in good deeds until one accepts that a hypostatic being has died on one’s behalf and that one’s deeds by themselves do nothing to work toward one’s eternal spiritual fate. So by trusting in a sacrifice or expiation that nullifies the importance of good deeds, one then begins to “naturally” perform good deeds via supernatural power. While the Christian perspective does offer a supposed corrective for overweening pride, it also seems to imply that good deeds do not effect spiritual change in an individual, making said endeavours meaningless, because good deeds neither purify one spiritually nor work toward one’s eternal spiritual fate. It is a self-contradictory creed. Also, it did not prevent Trinitarian Crusaders from asserting their beliefs by killing Jews and Muslims for their refusal to believe in the Trinity and abandon “legalistic” ritual observance such as circumcision, dietary law, etc. Even today religiously observant Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox hate, dispute, and contend with one another almost more fervently than they work together to fight liberal degeneracy, if at all. That is why liberal ideology is successfully spreading: because the “religious” Christians are too busy fighting one another.

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8 hours ago, Northwest said:

@layman

According to your perspective, is there any objective way to measure this, especially if people’s innate intellectual capacities differ, and even reasoning and evidence may fail?

 

We are discussing about the nature of faith, which i believe is something that is hidden inside a person.

We may know objectively certain characteristics of the person's faith from his actions, but not fully.  We can only make conclusion objectively (maybe at higher level of probability) if the person reveals his intention that matches his actions.  Whether the intention is right or wrong is different matter.

True value of a person faith is unknown, only  that we can  estimate with some level of confidence through their actions that match  certain criteria that are commonly accepted as the truth.

Sincerity of people cannot be measured objectively.  It is a matter of what the heart has decided. It is unseen. Actions that come out from a person can be measured by observation.

Wallahualam. 

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