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Randal Rauser, a professor of theology at Taylor Seminary, Edmonton, Canada, argues that every area of life requires a faith commitment :

At the end of his tremendously irritating film “Religulous”, Bill Maher states that “Faith means making a virtue out of not thinking.” With this strange definition Maher summarizes a notion of faith which has become enormously popular in recent years, particularly with the rise of the new atheists. (Consider Richard Dawkins who dismisses religious believers as “faith heads”.)

While such definitions that pit faith against reason are nothing new (Mark Twain defined faith as “believing what you know ain’t true”), they have always been utterly spurious, baloney, a mere canard. A much more plausible definition of faith emerges when we consider philosopher Anthony Kenny’s definition of reason. Kenny defines reason as the mean between skepticism and credulity, that is, the optimal balance between inappropriate belief and inappropriate doubt.

This definition of reason is significant, because if willingness to believe is written into the very conception of reason, then the rational person is the one who exercises the proper amount of faith, and not the one who eschews faith altogether. And this means that the atheist or skeptic who insists “I exercise reason, not faith” is like the child who insists “I breathe air, not oxygen. ”

Read the rest . . .

(Via: Cloud of Witnesses )

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