Is faith, as a methodology, good, bad, or indifferent? Please include how you define faith.
First, terms.Reason:The practice of gauging all claims made on the plausibility of the reason and evidence presented, and then believing them and operating on the assumptions generated, only in scale to that plausibility.The above methodology, requires no faith whatsoever, and has nothing in common with faith, whatsoever. If you only believe in direct scale to the plausibility of reason and evidence, what need have you of faith?Faith therefore, has to be belief NOT in scale to the plausibility of reason and evidence.Whatever else it might be, and however else it can be defined, the above has to be part of that definition.AKA, you might think you have some small evidence, based on the authority of the one making the claim for instance, but basing an entire life philosophy upon the weak evidence of the argument from authority, is belief out of scale with the plausibility, and thus requires a lot of faith.Faith always seems to come down to accepting claims at face value, rather then questioning and analyzing them.Question:What possible benefit can come from the methodology of faith, apart from mere coincidence?I can't think of a one. I've challenged hundred of people to find a single benefit that comes from the application of faith as a methodology, that can't be gained better through reason.So I can't answer this question.I can show what the downsides of faith are.1. Faith is anti truth, because it doesn't allow us to accept being wrong.Because faith WILL cause Confirmation bias, and other cognitive biases such as Selection bias.A definition of faith by C.S. Lewis has been making the rounds online lately, as if its a good thing."Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods."This position is antithetical to an honest search for increasing truth value.Because anyone can be temporarily persuaded with faulty reasoning and or made up/misinterpreted evidence. If you haven't been exposed to the arguments before, it is simplistic to make you believe the US faked the moon landings.However, when you go and research the arguments, and realize every single argument to that effect EVER, has been fully countered and discredited, should we "continue to hold on because your reason once accepted it, in spite of your changing moods?"No. Yet about 25% of the population do, and think we faked the moon landings, through faith.If you honestly care about truth value, then you must be open to being wrong. You must doubt yourself, including conclusions you came to through previous reason.And truth matters. Therefore faith is a direct enemy of actual truth.Faith is putting your current belief, above actual truth.Faith doesn't want to know if its wrong, because it cares about belief, not truth.But when a belief is only held in proportion to its plausibility, and we aren't emotionally attached to them, we are open to change and can honestly seek increasing truth value.This is vitally important to the future of our species.Because of this precise effect, faith always defends the status quo. It defends what people currently believe. It is fundamentally against change or progress.And this world has many looming threats that require progress, which makes this a critically vital issue.All human progress, has come from doubt, which is the opposite of faith.What truth has faith ever led us to? Unless the original faith claim just happens to be true by coincidence, the faith methodology cannot possibly lead to truth.2. Faith is fundamentally divisive.When you reach a belief position through the plausibility of reason and evidence, you can use the same process to guide others to the same conclusion.Which is why properly peer reviewed, verified, and falsifiable scientific knowledge is accepted by the scientific community anywhere on earth.But when you believe, through faith, that you have a unique line on truth, through revelation to you or other humans, it fundamentally divides you from people who disagree.Reason cannot reason a person out of a position they were not reasoned into.Which is why diplomacy and negotiating with the devoutly faithful middle east has never been effective.3. Faith leads to exploitation.When you are willing to believe faith claims at a level not in scale with the plausibility of reason and evidence, its quite simple to play off your wishful thinking to exploit you.Case in point, corporations playing American Christianity into the "religious right" with minor (to the corporations) social concessions, in order to get them to accept less regulation of said corporations.Or all the billions of dollars donated to faith causes.But most importantly, it seems to me that faith is involved in justifying all human atrocities. This is the gravest form of exploitation.If we merely apply reason and common human empathy, you won't unite people in committing genocide.While faith has been quite successful in that endeavor:Terry Finley's answer to Why do some people who say they are atheists turn out to be Anti-theists?Even secular atrocity has been faith based. Nazi Germany and Stalinist Soviet Union both required faith in the regime and their policies, and didn't allow free thought and reason.This is why I don't see Theism vs Atheism as the important issue.I think Faith vs Reason is the crucial discussion.Other related questions:What is the best, or any defensible methodology, for finding the truth?What is good or bad about blind faith? Blind faith is here defined as belief that is not based on reason or evidence, but might have evidence on its side.How is faith different from Confirmation bias, and why would either be admirable qualities?