Walker wrote:Did you ever have a thought pop into your head that is totally unrelated to your current chain of thoughts, and unconnected to current perception? A thought “out of the blue” as the saying goes. If you describe this thought it seems so out-of-place that you might say, it’s not even my own.
I think the answer must be 'no'.
A 'chain of thought'sounds like the application of logic or mathematics, or the deliberate simplification of a problem. It is such chains of thought that are artificial; such chains are not my own thoughts because I am trying to exclude myself from them, to think objectively about a subject, as we might do when we are doing science.
So I would say it is the other way round; when this inconsistent thought pops into my head it is my subjective existence reasserting itself. It is reminding me that there are always other ways to look at the subject, and other subjects to look at.
If you “unpack” any world view that speculates on first cause or its absence, eventually you’re going to find the box marked belief. What’s in there? Conditioning, and also chemistry that is devoted to the body staying alive, which is the biological imperative for the benefit of the species.
I do not see that is necessarily true. I can be aware that a chain of reasoning is contingent on something being true, I do not have to pretend certainty about that something when it isn't there. For example, I can posit the reason for certain experiences is that there are physical objects (as opposed to simply ideas) but I do not pretend I can ever prove this.
Indeed, I do not see how (strictly speaking) I can believe something is true. To say the reason I think something is true is just that 'I believe it', would be to admit I had no objective reason. If I am aware I have no objective reason to think something, then I am aware it could be otherwise. If I am aware things could be otherwise then I would not have a firm belief.
To put it another way, if somebody says 'I believe X' we can ask them 'Why?' and expect them to give reasons. But if it was literally just a belief, the answer would have to be 'No reason, I just do'. After getting such an answer, we might wonder if they were really a robot.
Folks do not say that a scientist’s incomplete knowledge of science implies non-existence of science.
This is because what a scientist’s incomplete knowledge actually implies, is belief.
That is to confuse science-the-method with what science is applied to. To know the rules of chess isn't a claim to be be able to win every game.
Science is well aware that it rests on certain assumptions and thus everything it says about the world is contingent on those assumptions being true. On the other hand, science does successfully predict things, it makes testable propositions. No act of faith is required.
Folks do say that a God-knower’s incomplete knowledge of God implies non-existence of God.
However like the scientist, what a God-knower’s incomplete knowledge of God actually implies, is belief.
If the God-knower is aware they are working from certain assumptions, like the scientist, then thus far the two are similar.
On the other hand, if the God-knower claims certainty
, but cannot show why they should be certain, then we are back with what I wrote above. I do not see how they can believe something - because they believe it. It would be like saying 'I am both uncertain and certain'.