[Don’t miss Part I of Jeremy’s article on Religulous.]
Why is faith a good thing?
To many people, the above question is an odd one. Of course faith is a good thing. Why question that? However, in “Religulous” it is one of Maher’s chief objections to religion (particularly Christianity).
The question is first raised by Maher after he asks the pastor of a small truck stop chapel how any rational person can believe in a talking snake in a garden 5000 years ago. The pastor responded by saying that, “It’s a faith thing,” to which Maher replies, “Yeah, but why is faith good?”
Maher’s argument is that a person who’s life is in danger or who is going through hard times would be justified to believe God, but for anyone else faith is pointless. His objection is that of many other skeptics: faith is unfounded and breeds comfort, but isn’t useful. I disagree.
Maher’s beliefs are incorrect for two reasons: first, he assumes that all faith is blind faith, and second, he thinks faith is not relevant. Although these two aspects of faith are inter-connected, I’ll begin by explaining the difference between faith and blind faith.