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Gordon Taylor

Retired engineer

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Are people of faith in fact gullible?

Gullibility is the belief in something with no substantiating facts to support that something. I contend that if you believe in something based upon Scripture, whichever religion you belong to then you are gullible. That is not to mean evil or stupid but simply gullible. This also differs somewhat from credulous depending on what actions you take in support of your beliefs or faith.

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    Apr 16 2013: Hi Gordon,
    From your profile, it looks like you are new to TED.....Welcome:>)

    I do not feel that it is very useful to generalize for a huge group of people. Many people of faith believe they have substantiating facts to support their personal belief. Of course, other people of different faith believe THEY also have substantiating facts to support THEIR belief.

    Some folks were born into a religion and simply accepted it as their belief, some folks have explored a belief and embraced it. Personally, I was born into a religion and questioned it from the time I was a child. As an adult, I explored and researched several different religions and philosophical beliefs, and I do not feel a desire to practice a religion.

    Some of the beliefs have value, and my perception is that the important piece is HOW people use the information. According to the definition, yes, some people may be gullible, and some people may truly use their beliefs as valuable life guides, fully aware and knowledgeble about the content of what they choose to believe.

    I agree with George..."Remember to never use the word all or never because it is never always true." Trying to define and label a large group of people does not make much sense to me, because whatever your label is, it generally is not true for all members of that group, and it actually limits our understanding. I prefer to have an open heart and mind rather than putting folks in a little box I may build for myself.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gullibility
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      Apr 16 2013: Hi Colleen
      I like you, was born into a religion and like you do not follow it. I would suggest that you go to my website and read my blog on Faith and Gullibility(Moderation and Reason.gordontaylor590.wordpress.com), not that it is particularly insightful but it more or less explains my thoughts on the subject. I don't consider myself an atheist or even a cynic but rather a skeptic. I do not deny that there can be a supreme being but I cannot accept the Scriptures, regardless of their origin, as the "word of God". I have a degree in Physics but I don't consider myself a convert to Science as a religion. I do believe that Moderation and Reason must prevail if we are achieve any measure of peace in the world.
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        Apr 16 2013: Hi Gordon,
        Thanks for the suggestion. Perhaps you could share your thoughts right here in the discussion you facilitate. The only label I accept is "explorer" of the human life experience:>)
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          Apr 16 2013: I guess I should take time to explain my beliefs or lack thereof. First of all I do not pretend to have a reason to believe in or doubt a specific deity. I do not believe in the scriptures in total regardless of which one(s) are promoted. I am not a fan of organized anything because almost invariably the organization becomes more important than its members. This is particularly true of some religions and labor unions.

          As an interesting aside is my experience with near death. I was struck with meningitis, bleeding ulcer, pnuemonia, a stroke and several major seizures. After a month in intensive care and months of rehabilitation I was left deaf and with some mobility impairment. I have had a cochlear implant and walk with a cane but at least I can walk. What I learned was that my family would not give up on me and let the doctors pull my feeding tube. They also put up with my hearing impairment and other disabilities. Recently my wife went through a major heart attack and was also near death. This time my kids and myself went through the not giving up phase and she is currently recovering. None of this has changed my view of what is important and how I choose to live my life. Once you lose your fear of dying you can look at your faith and belief system with some considerably improved clarity.
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        Apr 17 2013: Gordon,
        I also feel that often times, the organization and dogma of a religion becomes more important than the members. This may be one factor which leads to gullibility? When folks are supporting the organization wholeheartedly, without exploration or evaluation of the concepts that are being practiced, preached and promoted, they may simply be passing on the information without consideration of the underlying manifestations.

        I think of the catholic church, for example, and the extensive cover-up of the sexual molestation of children. It apparently was more important for the leaders of that church to protect their reputation and the supposed reputation of the church in favor of taking care of its people, including, little innocent children

        WOW Gordon! I'm sorry for the chellenges you and your family have faced, and I sincerely hope you are all doing as well as possible at this time.....sending you loving, healing energy.

        Facing death certainly CAN cause a renewed perception of life. At the time of my NDE, I also was very aware of the wonderful, caring support from so many friends and family, and in fact, I often focused on that as a way to help me stay connected with everything that was happening. I was aware of the love shared with them prior to the challenge, and everything that happened at that time reinforced the love of people, which I am very grateful for.

        I cannot say that the NDE "changed my view" of life, and it certainly did intensify many thoughts, feelings, perceptions and beliefs I had nurtured in my life adventure:>)

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