Re: Agnosticism and the Fear of Atheism (was re: Vital Essence)

From: Robert Owen (
Date: Mon Jan 24 2000 - 18:55:20 MST

"Lee Daniel Crocker (none)" wrote:

> > > >[1] What is a "rational belief"? An example?
> > >
> > > A "rational belief" is an oxymoron.
> >
> > Certainly, but it occurs to me, J.R., that there is something very
> > peculiar about the human behavior of "believing in something", at
> > least among so-called "civilized occidentals". Excuse the personal
> > reference, but as nearly as I can tell I've never been able to
> > "believe" in anything, one way or the other. In fact, I doubt that
> > I even understand (can identify with, empathize with) the human
> > subjective state referenced by the sentence "I believe".
> I suspect that you believe the sun will rise tomorrow...

Just time for a brief response. I would never say "I believe the Sun
will rise tomorrow." I would prefer "I EXPECT" the sun to rise tomorrow"
which is a very different proposition. Or, to probe a little deeper, I
might say "IF the sun doesn't rise tomorrow, THEN our formulations
of the Mechanics of Planetary Motion, or the Psychophysiology of
Human Perception, or both, are either incomplete or gravely flawed.


Robert M. Owen
The Orion Institute
57 W. Morgan Street
Brevard, NC 28712-3659 USA

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