Complete trust or confidence in someone or something is faith. Faith is also a strong belief in a God or Gods. The strength of the belief I have not drawn boundaries around to understand it; I don’t know if I need to drawn the lines of containment around the idea of faith to stand under it. Where faith equals a system of belief, I understand that. I am of the Catholic faith, what ever variegation I belong to I have not bothered to delineate in a long time.
There is form of believing that is linked with trusting and having faith. Faithfulness as in fidelity is another related kind of belief. I believe in God, therefore I have faith in God. What does it mean to say this. I have faith in God is to say I believe in the existence of God. If you believe in the existence of God, can you believe in the non-existence of God, in a way that is called by another name, complete trust, thus, faith?
I have faith in the non-existence of God is or should be named as the first tenet of the Atheist faith.
There are devout monotheists; there are devout atheists. A picture falling off the wall signals an impending doom, someone’s downfall, the demise of something, I’v e been told. The superstitions of my youth I no longer believe, but then, neither can I disprove them. To believe in the veracity or the falsity of this or any superstition is based on faith. It’s interesting how those of a particular faith can have so little respect or reverence for the faith of another when that faith is other than the one the former holds to be true. He would have to hold it to be true otherwise it would not be a faith. Atheists have no doubt about the non-existence of God. If they do, they are not Atheists. They are as certain as believers in God, those whose faith is unshakeable or virtually unshakeable.
How God-like we become in our faith for God, in God; we do trust more than God, though. We trust our faith, although we carry a marked infidelity to that particular religion that holds our imagination. You do need imagination for faith, to maintain it. We are fickle in our faith, of course. The lack of proof may have something to do with this. How can doubt for something we believe without proof maintain itself indefinitely? It can’t, can it? For some, perhaps. For most of us?
What would one have to have in order to hold fast to one’s faith indefinitely? A man or a woman need faith to survive a relationship. Trust of the kind necessary in love is in itself what the best kind of faith can do. Without faith, which is what feeds the kind of trust we talk about when we say relationships need trust, relationships die. Faith breeds trust; okay, what then? Trust breeds respect; mistrust is disrespect? Yes? No? Maybe?
With trust we see again the person we love; we see the love once more, gaining a view of not only who we love, but why we love.
It’s faith that Daniel walks into the Lion’s Den with. It’s faith that Job holds onto through his trials and tribulations. I don’t know if it is faith with which the Hebrews enter the partition in the Red Sea–the parting of the waters is proof. No one needed faith. Faith is necessary for belief when reason should raise doubt, at least. Faith leads to a kind of knowledge; the knowledge that proof leads a person to is not a rational knowledge. The inferences of faith are rooted in the evidence of things not seen, if I can paraphrase Paul. Again, we are not talking about rational proof. Yet, we must acknowledge that the atheist disbelieves in God on faith as well. He does not have proof of the non-existence of God. His so called rational proofs for God’s non-existence are rooted in faith based reason. There are always leaps in any atheistic logic when it comes to God. Aristotle’s prime mover does not have to be God or a god or gods. Any argument against infinite regression does not have to equal a creator. Yet, neither can the atheist reductio ad absurdum himself to an uncreated universe.
Faith is complete trust; faith is necessary to perpetuate belief in facts. Facts do need belief; all beliefs need faith.