Complex faith and reason
Re: Faith vs. reason, Dec. 20 and Faith is not estranged from reason, Dec. 18.
I believe letter-writer Richard Paukstaitis misunderstands the relationship between faith and reason. These notions also touch upon the concepts of belief and knowledge, which also share a complex interrelationship.
Unfortunately, he misses the point of Richard Bastien’s opinion piece. He seems to think the two concepts are mutually exclusive. The two cannot be separated and operate closely with one another. He seems to trivialize the inherent complexity between the two notions which have been debated by some of the greatest thinkers of the West.
It is akin to Stephen Hawking’s bold proclamation, on the very first page of his book The Grand Design, that philosophy is dead at the hand of science. One need not be a philosopher to understand that such a statement is not a scientific one but a philosophical one and literally self-refuting. It is important to note that faith is not a term that only carries religious or theological baggage.
Inescapably, any world view will inevitably carry forth its own particular view of faith whether it’s some form of scientism, a-theological or theological interpretative framework.
As humans, it is very difficult to remove ourselves from our presuppositions, assumptions and biases. To think that reason stands alone untainted or uninfluenced is an epistemological naiveté of the worst kind.
I wonder which manifestation of reason Paukstaitis alludes to and which faith is it based upon.
SCOTT VENTUREYRA, Ottawa