Recently I heard someone say,
I prefer not to “believe” anything. I like to know…..or accept I don’t know until I do know.
That sounded silly to me even though on the face of things it sounds rational and wise.
I mean, I prefer to make decisions based on the best possible evidence. I don’t see anything wrong with that part.
Seeing is Believing
But there is a school of thought out there that sees all “belief” as bad. To this way of thinking the only valid concepts are those which can be observed with our 5 senses, measured and neatly quantified.
These folks tend to say, “I’ll believe it when I see it.”
But to take that whole concept to the extreme say, “I prefer not to “believe” anything,” makes no sense.
What is Belief
I could go into a whole long thing about what belief is. Oh, wait. I did just that not too long ago when I talked about the difference between faith and belief.
In a nut shell,
Belief is an opinion or judgement in which a person is fully persuaded.
You see, here’s the thing. Regardless of whether you choose to believe something is, or something is not, you are still believing something.
Beliefs in Action
A belief is simply what we hold to be true. The only way to put that belief into action and have it serve us is to apply faith.
And this is where some folks get tripped up, especially the “seeing is believing” crowd.
Faith involves believing something to be true without complete proof. Unfortunately many twist the understanding of faith to mean believing something in spite of contrary proof.
But that’s not faith. That’s foolishness.
Faith is not just a religious thing either. The secular world taps into faith all the time.
We humans are naturally creatures of faith. We hope for things that don’t exist yet and then go to work in the confidence that we can bring those things we hope for into reality. Every great achievement, things like Olympic champions, great engineering feats, huge corporations, or mighty military victories, started with an element of faith.
Take the Olympic champion as just one example.
No one wins the gold medal without a ton of faith that they can become a champion. Before they actually do win they are just one of many contenders. But actually winning requires a strong belief that they are going to win coupled with a tremendously disciplined workout regime that is exercised in every confidence that the gold medal is going to be theirs.
Many will have similar faith and not win the gold. But no one who wins the gold is completely without that faith.
Seeing is believing? No. The truth is exactly the opposite. Believing is seeing.
If someone doesn’t have some idea in their mind that they can create something that doesn’t yet exist or do something that hasn’t been done (i.e. they are without faith) then nothing new will ever be achieved by humanity. Scientists that are working on cures for diseases work in the faith that one day a cure will be discovered.
Everyone believes something. The real question is this. Is what you believe true?