Before any discussion of faith and reason can begin we need to define the parameters as both words have diverse meanings. I would assume that when we discuss the coexistence of Faith and Reason, that we are discussing the mutually exclusive definitions of the terms.

 

Most of the comments I have seen here on this topic seem to come from folks who embrace mumbo-jumbo and insist upon blending science with mumbo-jumbo. For example commenter roakes argues that 'Faith and Reason are interdependent,' as if the last 500 years of western history was not Reason struggling to break free from religion.

 

Yet, even as most commenters (as of this posting) seem to be of this persuasion, most of the voting indicates that the silent readers disagree. Faith and Reason are separate approaches to truth.

 

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--Reason is defined as Logic; the capacity for logical, rational, and analytic thought; intelligence. In Philosophy, reason is the faculty or power of acquiring intellectual knowledge, either by direct understanding of first principles or by argument.

 

Logic is the science that investigates the principles governing correct or reliable inference. The study of the principles of reasoning, especially of the structure of propositions as distinguished from their content and of method and validity in deductive reasoning.

 

--Faith is defined as a set of beliefs not based on logical proof nor material evidence; a system of religious belief. Such as a confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of one's belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion.

 

Not only is faith the body of dogma of a religion, but also the theological virtue defined as secure belief in God and a trusting acceptance of God's will.

 

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So reason is careful analysis to uncover truth, while faith is the acquiescence to belief without

evidence of truth. Faith assumes truth, while reason assumes that truth necessitates evidence.

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Now to those who say that Faith can illuminate Reason, I point to our history of struggle with Reason being attacked by Faith. Any such argument must rationalize this reality. Reason can illuminate Faith, and I have posted such an example:

 

The Sun is our father in heaven.

http://www.bigthink.com/faith-beliefs/9020

 

But to those who argue that Reason alone is all we need, I refer you to John Ralston Saul, Canada's preeminent philosopher and spouse of Canada's former Governor General who has published much to criticize a purely Rational approach.

 

So, if Faith and Reason are indeed compatible within Saul's parameter's, I leave that to you to prove.