3 Types of Faith or Belief

Paul Kurtz said that there are three kinds of faith.

First - intransigent faith. This is a faith that ignores evidence against it and is held to in the face of disproof. For example, the Catholic Church would be unaffected by total proof that Jesus was a paedophile. It would be reasoned for example that as he was God he could not have freely done such a terrible thing as abuse children. It would be reasoned that he let himself be possessed by Satan for our sins so that it was really Satan taking over his body and committing the acts. It might be reasoned that the proof is a satanic fraud. They boast about their faith but is it faith when they have to invent reasons out of thin air for dismissing the proof? No! They are guessing and trying to elevate that guessing to the status of faith.

Second - wilful faith, when the evidence neither indicates you should believe or that you should not, you choose to believe. Wilful belief is possible where there is no evidence at all.

Third, faith is a hypothesis based on evidence. Since everybody sees evidence differently this view makes a case for tolerance and dialogue. The believer likes a challenge.

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