Hold your beliefs lightly

I have no truck with faith; it is just another term for un-reasoned belief IMHO.

But consciousness is the deepest of the deep problems in philosophy and science. We may never understand it, although there are some who claim to have done so.

You should be familiar by now with my thoughts on belief, and the problem of actually having true belief (sometimes defined as knowledge) about anything that is not concrete, directly observable, immediate, easily repeatable, and within the capabilities of our limited senses and intellect to understand.  Even then, we are often wrong.

Curiously, there is also coincident truth, which is belief that is correct, but the grounds for holding that belief are pretty shaky. This probably happens a lot more than we realize. However, since we have no universally applicable way of establishing truth in complex matters, we are not much farther ahead either way. Logic is OK, but limited. Ditto for its child mathematics. Science is OK, but flawed. Common sense is OK, but only handles the simple cases. Religion? What can I say? Mysticism, occult knowledge? Ditto.

Seven billion plus folks, 7 billion plus personalized systems of belief. They can not all be correct in whole. Maybe some are correct in part, on the simpler things at least. Maybe this is epistemological nihilism as opposed to skepticism.

I have written hundreds of pages of hand-scrawled notes on belief and knowledge, and read some, with not very much progress – a daunting topic, one not for the faint of heart.

Hold your beliefs lightly, they are likely to be wrong, at least in part. I have to remind myself of that frequently. Of course, this statement itself being a statement of belief, we get into a Gödel-like paradox.

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