Belief

You only believe in something when you don’t know.

Update: So you build a machine according to an interpretation of data and you design it so that when A is done P is the result.

You believe A will produce P. You hope A will produce P.

So you action the apparatus but it produces X instead. Now you know that your belief that A produces P is false.

However if you continue believing A produces P, when I know it doesn’t because experience shows it doesn’t, then we will disagree.

Your problem then is rejecting experience and replacing it with hope or belief. This is the working of the religious mind which believes in the absence of fact or knowledge. Religious minds believe belief always trumps reality.

About Louis Hissink

Retired diamond exploration geologist. I spent my professional life looking for mineral deposits, found some, and also located a number of kimberlites in NSW and Western Australia. Exploration geology is the closest one can get to practicing the scientific method, mineral exploration always being concerned with finding anomalous geophysical or geochemical data, framing a model and explanation for the anomaly and then testing it with drilling or excavation. All scientific theories are ultimately false since they invariably involved explaining something with incomplete extant knowledge. Since no one is omniscient or knows everything, so too scientific theories which are solely limited to existing knowledge. Because the future always yields new data, scientific theories must change to be compatible with the new data. Thus a true scientist is never in love with any particular theory, always knowing that when the facts change, so too must he/she change their minds.
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3 Responses to Belief

  1. Richard says:

    Show me this thing, Ill believe in it.

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  2. Richard says:

    I know that belief is not the same as knowing but does not belief in experimentation lead to certain knowledge? How can knowledge be approached without belief in the work necessary to arrive at knowledge? I’m still not convinced the two conditions are not related somehow. I know I’ll think about it some more. I believe that may help.

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    • Belief exists while empiric evidence has not yet been acquired. One needs to also understand the nature of thinking itself. Every thought we have is the internal voicing of memories.

      Real world example might be a geophysical survey of part of the earth’s surface that yields an anomaly. This anomaly is interpreted and a solution offered which we believe to be correct.

      This is where consensus is appropriate – we all agree that the interpretation is realistic and that there is at depth a large body of magnetic material which produced the anomaly.

      The next step is to drill a hole into the anomaly.

      Two outcomes are possible – failure or success. If success we now stop believing and know what produced the anomaly.

      If false, then either we reject the idea or belief, or continue to believe and offer ad hoc explanations to keep the belief alive. This process describes the present day Climate Change movement – and which makes it a religion.

      The scientific method is nothing other than experience trumping belief, and the process by which when the facts change, one changes one’s mind. Precisely what JM Keynes stated last century.

      T

      So

      Like

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