Belief and Understanding

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reasonedutopia
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by reasonedutopia » April 3rd, 2018, 5:36 pm

Atreyu, you said: "When people act as if their beliefs are facts, as if they know, then really all they're doing is lying, both to themselves and others..."

Most certainly. In fact, I would assert that beliefs are the cause of nearly all of society's discord and misery. Beliefs are assumed truths – convictions without proof or evidence and are tenacious. The fact that one refers to them as "beliefs" signifies that they are untrue and best promptly eliminated.

In my lexicon, Understanding is the opposite of belief. I claim I understand something when it is backed up by scientific proof and/or observable fact. Or, I can use facts in hand to arrive at a well deduced understanding of certain matters (hypothesis or theory).

Atreyu, on my website "A Reasoned Utopia", I write about striving for a better society or Utopia, as I alluringly label it. I assert that Utopia can exist only if all inhabitants are enlightened (i.e. able to reason clearly and objectively). Ergo, it is incumbent on all who desire Utopia to strive to become enlightened. Enlightenment can be attained by eliminating ones beliefs which corrupt and bias the ability to reason clearly and objectively. My essays focus on how beliefs affect ones reasoning, obstacles to confronting them and how to confront and eliminate them.

Feel free to peruse my writing at www.reasonedutopia.com. Some of the essays are a tad rough around the edges as I put up my web site only last month and am still "organizing" it.

Burning Ghost, I have a concrete answer to your question "Does knowledge come before belief, or belief before knowledge?" Belief comes before knowledge. Darkness comes before light. Once you are enlightened in the light, you will forever be out of the darkness.........

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Vivek7
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Vivek7 » April 5th, 2018, 10:10 am

Belief has a base on shaky ground and most of what we believe does not pass the ordeal of time and gets lost in the thin air in the course of time and yet belief is something that has widened our horizon or else our scope thought would be limited.

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Commonsense2
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Commonsense2 » April 5th, 2018, 12:11 pm

There is no need to understand something in order to believe it. Belief is acceptance without thinking. Understanding, on the other hand, is a cognitive action. Because belief occurs without any cognitive activity, it is unrelated, unnecessary and unhelpful to understanding.

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jerlands
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by jerlands » April 5th, 2018, 1:49 pm

Burning ghost wrote:
March 10th, 2018, 3:07 am
Anselm said I must believe so that I can understand and this was countered by Abelard:

"no one can believe something which he has not first understood."
Belief and understanding my be similar to to catching the scent of a flower and then discovering where it comes from. We witness things in the world, for instance, a river flooding and see the damage then think of ways to mitigate. Solutions usually result from prior experience and our application is belief it will work but the correct solution only comes from complete understanding.

Viktor Schauberger "Comprehend and Copy Nature"
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

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Cosmogenes
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Cosmogenes » April 8th, 2018, 2:54 pm

I see that believe without evidence is abandoning the rational aspect of one's mind. But even understanding based on evidence must be subject to keeping an open mind for subsequent evidence which may confirm or contradict one's understanding.
As a "born-again skeptic", I prefer to weigh the available evidence and, rather than a forming a "belief", I am satisfied with a provisional stipulation.

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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Burning ghost » April 9th, 2018, 12:00 am

We believe things because there is a need to believe things. The actual experience of life makes us seek understanding and from that understanding comes a more constricted belief.

Really this boils down to the nascent form of knowledge. The idea and skeptical thought comes from a freedom beyond the mere evidence at hand, yet it never abandons the evidence at hand completely only widens exploration. In this sense belief is inhibiting if, and only if, it is stretched beyond the reach of the current understanding.
AKA badgerjelly

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Commonsense2
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Commonsense2 » April 9th, 2018, 12:22 pm

Burning ghost wrote:
April 9th, 2018, 12:00 am
We believe things because there is a need to believe things. The actual experience of life makes us seek understanding and from that understanding comes a more constricted belief.
I think I am not using the word “understanding” the same way you are. What does the word mean to you, please?

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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Burning ghost » April 10th, 2018, 5:15 am

Knowledge, knowing, and application of. I am not using it in any peculiar way. Through experience my understanding of X is either reinforced or brought into question (generally it is neither an all or nothing situation - I'd call that dogma.)
AKA badgerjelly

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nw123
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by nw123 » May 4th, 2018, 6:00 pm

ProgrammingGodJordan wrote:
March 11th, 2018, 12:42 am
Belief is a nonsensical paradigm that generally facilitates that one ignores evidence, as per definition and research.
While I am no philosopher, I, in my opinion, see a futility in this thought process. Belief and understanding are coupled together. Take for example the Christian faith. They believe that God exists based on their understanding of the Bible and the necessity of belief in their religion. In that point, they understand that belief, or faith, is necessary because God is not able to be understood by a limited human mind. In this way they complement each other.

As well, if belief is not a viable option, then is there something to take its place? If someone says, "trust me", am I not allowed to trust or believe them? How can I have faith in anyone or anything? As I search for an alternative myself, I can not think of something to replace "belief". Without belief or belief in something greater, it seems that the possibility for meaning for anyone's life is not possible and that is truly depressing. Life then becomes pointless. Morals and laws are then subjective.

This is my first or many posts through which I am attempting to expand and challenge any views I may hold.

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Thinking critical
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Thinking critical » May 4th, 2018, 9:25 pm

Belief and understanding aren't always mutually compatible, belief has many variations, there can be both true and false beliefs plus rational and irrational ones.
False belief would indicate you have misunderstood the proposition where as a true belief would mean you have understood. We then have belief in the absence of any form of understanding which could be considered as faith. The rational or irrational belief would be contingent on reason, why do you believe the proposition is true? The reasoning behind the rational/irrational belief is influenced by the competency of the understanding and the willingness to accept the conclusions which the understanding provides.
I would the argue that a true belief is defined as knowledge, therefore the more we understand something the less reliant we are on belief and the proposition becomes knowledge.
This cocky little cognitive contortionist will straighten you right out

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Felix
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Re: Belief and Understanding

Post by Felix » May 4th, 2018, 11:27 pm

Anything one hasn't personally verified to be true is second-hand knowledge and therefore a belief, so most of what we know has been believed without being understood, especially if one has had a modern rote-learning type of education. And there are levels or stages of understanding. In most things one may never go beyond a superficial level, few have the intellectual curiosity and passion of a Leonardo De Vinci, and so settle for belief rather than understanding. And then there is intuitive non-verbal understanding, which does not require belief. Do you believe in magic?
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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