What does Rational Mean?: Benjamin-Newton United

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  • BEN-NEW's Network
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  • by Ben Huot
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"Think Critically" with BENjamin-NEWton's Network © Ben Huot 1998-Present.

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What does Rational Mean?

Essay

When many people read that I am promoting what is irrational, they say that it is ridiculous to do things for no reason. This is not what I mean by using the world irrational. This current generation of people think that facts are the only way to determine actuality or truth. A good example of what is commonly referred to as irrational is a feeling/choice like unconditional love. Faith, by its very definition, is based on the concept of knowing something is true without having to prove it.

The reason why we sin and/or refuse to become Christians (be sorry for and stop committing our sins/evil acts) is not because we lack enough understanding or that there is not enough reason to believe. Faith is an act of the will, not the mind. Sin is when we choose to do wrong, when we know better. God has called us to believe, not to understand. The reason why things involving God involve believing, without being able to prove it, is because God, although I believe is completely rational, is infinitely beyond us. Much of biblical theology is based on paradox and cannot be explained by math or science.

The basis for Buddhism is that we need both good actions plus we need to strengthen our mind and we are saved by doing good deeds and by training our mind, to transcend the physical world. What enlightenment means is a big debate, amongst different schools of Buddhism. The Islamic Fundamentalists in the Middle East are often asked why they kill fellow Muslims, in terrorist attacks, and the response is usually that if these people were living good lives, they will be able to live in paradise forever. The unique thing about Christianity is that it deals with failure.

If you have committed too mans sins and you do not have enough time, to do enough good deeds, to cancel the bad deeds out and/or don't know exactly what you must do, you will likely give up or be very depressed. Christianity is based on the idea, that although we can and should always do the right thing, we unavoidably don't, repeatedly. The Christian worldview sees all people as addicts, to doing the wrong thing, and solves this by God divinely and directly intervening, in our lives, to change the way we think and to support us making good choices.

In an overly simplistic sense, salvation is too easy and all you have to say is that you are sorry for your sins and go to heaven. Many people wonder how this makes any sense or gives any justice. The other aspects of salvation paint a very different picture. Not only are you to feel sorry for your sins and confess them to God, you also are supposed to stop committing them and then live life completely differently.

When you repent of your sins, you don't just feel sorry for them: you submit your entire mind, will, emotions, body, and soul to God's will. You then live a completely different life and your main goal is to further God's will in the world. You make the decision that, instead of leaving for your own gains, you live for the gains of other people and animals and the Kingdom of God on earth.

Does this kind of Christian salvation make sense? Can you prove it conclusively, using only factual evidence, that can be quantified in numbers? This is what I mean by irrational: sensical, but not limited by the material world and a purely factual understanding of life.

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Website Card Data

20 Years of Critical Thinking
Creativity in Philosophy, Not Theology

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I am a researcher, writer, and designer for consumer, citizen, and seeker advocacy. I can improve your life, by giving you better advice.

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