GoingPostal

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  1. Hello, I'm new here. Came to ask a couple questions, and I couldn't find a Q/A forum, so apologies if I've posted this in the wrong place. I have a friend with a bachelor's in mech engineering, and he's pretty steadfast in his belief in the bible, down to having quote locations memorized. He knows about faith vs reason, creationism vs evolution, etc. In many ways, he's got a far better grasp than me on what those things are defined as. I've only recently taken a deep interest in a proper academic study of philosophy. Recently, I have been trying to explain to this friend that accepting God exists is taking what someone told you on faith - the "leap of faith" that Christians talk about - when in fact there's no reason to believe in any of it, because it isn't proveable by the scientific method. He identified I had brought up "Faith vs Reason". Then said his social sciences teacher taught him "Faith and reason co-exist". An example he used, you have faith in what your parents say, and your reason is that you trust them. He seemed to be fine with there being "a reason" for believing in things. It just seems to be misappropriate usage of the word with respect to faith vs reason. A definition I gave him was dictionary.com's "reason: a logical, rational, analytical argument". But he kept incessantly restating reason as a simple "why you did something". He went on to another fine example. This is the gist of what he said. "You're approaching a traffic light, and its green. When you go through the light, you are taking it on faith that people headed the other way will stop at red, when you really have no way of knowing they will stop." To which I said, people go through green and stop at red because its enforced by law. He then retorts "Then you're taking it on faith that they'll obey the law".. I replied I follow the law because if I don't I'll go to jail, whether those guys do it or not - I don't even think for or about the other people on the road. Then we went on to talking about Physics (my major). He said something like "Do you believe in electrons?" I said, obviously I do. He replied "Then you're taking it on faith that authors and textbooks are right." So I listed out a bunch of experiments I'd actually done myself that help confirm we have electrons, in addition to reading a logical argument supporting the observable evidence, and finding myself in a state of agreement. Plus the fact that there's an extremely important commodity called "electricity" that actually applies the science behind it all, in everyday use. He said "Do you believe in neutrons?" ... So here's the questions. First, I'm wondering why everything I was saying was just bouncing off him without effect. Its like.. he has developed the mental capacity to question the reasons of things he's courted, but doesn't question the things that came without any. Secondly, is it probable that he's too late to be "fixed"? He's already well-read and graduated, plus he's lived a sheltered life under church. Otherwise, I don't expect the friendship to last long, now the cat's out of the bag.