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Lunchtime Philosophy

I went for lunch today with a friend. Our conversations always leave my head spinning, just a little. They're big, they're philosophical, they're personal. Sometimes they go around in circles and I forget where we came from or where we were headed.

But I'm always glad for them, because they make me think. They challenge me to ask why I believe the things that I do, and to consider the myriad of views that disagree with my own.*

After we moved on from philosophy to computers (we always get distracted) and I bought a netbook, I am left with two over-arching areas of thought:

a) There are days that I fear that I am essentially a child who is convinced of the existence of Santa Claus. As rational as my beliefs about Jesus seem to me, I sometimes find myself wondering if the wool is being pulled over my eyes. Do I sound as ridiculous to secularists as I would find a believer in the big red Christmas man? Am I oblivious to some obvious fact that would bring my Jenga tower toppling down?

Yet at the end of the day, despite my fears of how I am perceived or whether I am slightly deluded, when I stop and look at what and why I believe, I come back to Peter, who said to Jesus, "Where else would we go? You have the words of eternal life."

b) My friend's main barrier to faith (not specifically faith in Jesus, but faith in any religious system) has to do with intuition, logic, and submission. My attempt at a concise summary would be: If we choose a religious system based on our logical thought & intuitive processes, what do we do when those same processes come into conflict with the authority we've chosen to submit ourselves to? If we trusted them enough to choose our worldview, we must continue to trust them and therefore reject this worldview. If we choose instead to accept that the authority is right and we are wrong, we are denying the very thing which led us to accept the authority in the first place. So we're left with the question, do we trust our intuition or not? Can we trust it sometimes, but not others? Why/why not?

I hope that made sense to you. It makes sense to me (assuming I'm recalling it correctly), and I am not sure what the answer is. Any thoughts out there?

And in a step that will only result in more spinning-brain-syndrome, complex discussions, and a (hopefully) more thoroughly self-examined life, I began reading Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals by Immanual Kant, as lent to me by my philosophical friend.

*I also tend to laugh in these conversations. Today, it was because I was compared to both Lewis Carroll and a Marxist...


Mindy said…
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MLW said…
This blog makes me think of what Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 1 about the wisdom and foolishness of God and Man. When you try to apply man's wisdom to understanding God you will never suceed. Thus many walk away from God. That step of faith to believe in/accept God requires us to acknowledge our lack of ability to explain/define God. We need to accept Him based on what He says about Himself not on what I understand/know about Him intuitively or otherwise. Understanding comes with faith.

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