The Role of Reason in Deepening the Understanding of the Mysteries of

TheRoleof Reasonin DeepeningtheUnderstandingof theMysteriesof Faith

TheRoleof Reasonin DeepeningtheUnderstandingof theMysteryof Faith

Conventionally,reasonandfaithare consideredto themajorfactorsthat can be usedto justifyreligiousbelief.Thefactthatthetwo conceptsseemto severthesameepistemic purposehaveattractedtheattentionof theologianswhointendto studyandexplaintheroleof reasonin deepeningtheunderstandingof differentmysteriesof faith.Reasonisunderstoodas a setof principlesthat are usedin methodological inquiry,which may includemoral,religious,intellectual,oraesthetic(Swindal1). In essence,reasonplaysa criticalrolein facilitatinga comprehensiveunderstandingof faith,identifyingthepurposeof whatone believesin, organizingthinking,andinquireabout realitiesof faith.

Reasoningis a criticaltoolthat is usedby manyto enhancetheunderstandingof theconceptof faithas itissharedorpassedfrom one generationto another.Reasonisconsideredas an effectiveapproachtoidentifyingentitiesusingone’s senses.Itthenhelpspeopleto integratetheir perceptionsinto concepts,which helpthem gainknowledgefrom theentireprocessof integration.Afurtherintegrationof knowledgethatone has gainedabout theconceptof faithinto therestof one’s knowledgefacilitatesthemanipulationandevaluation of ideasas wellas facts.Theprocessof integratingknowledgehelpspeoplecomprehenduniversaltruthclaimsandenhancetheir abilityto understandthecompatibilityexistingbetween reasonandfaith(Tavani 16).

Reasonisconsideredas a processof thinkingwith thefundamentalattributeof clarity.Theemphasisplacedon claritywhenestablishingtheroleof reasonin theunderstandingof faithimpliesthatthevague,fuzzy,notionsandinstinctsare not partof thereason.Reason,therefore,callsforthedeterminationof identifiable buildingblocksthat can helppeoplethinkabout faithandcleartheir previousmisconceptions.In essence,theconceptof reasonprovokesone’s memories,ideas,sensoryinputs,andemotionsandmotivatespeopleto thinkof factsthat can defendwhattheybelievein.Thisbased on thenotionthatpeoplemust understandsothattheymight believe(Hutchins 2). From a personalexperience,beingbornin a Christian familymakesone followreligiouspracticeswithout factsto defendthosepractices.However,reasonbecomesa criticaltoolthat can helpan individualin questioningtheir religiouspracticestodetermine&nbspwhetherto continueorstopthesepractices.Thisprovesthatthe reasonis aneffectivetoolthat provokespeopleto thinkandidentifythebasisof their faith.

Reasonprovidesan organizedwayof identifyingthepurposeof faiththat one holds.Thisis becausereasonconcentratesnot simplyon causesof faithandapproachestoacquiringknowledgeof faith,butalsoon themajorcausesof theorganizedfaiththat is heldby a givenreligion(Swindal1).Sincethe clarityis thesolepurposeof reason,ithelpsone concentrateon fundamentals andcomeup with pertinentassociationsbetween differentaspectsof faith.Forexample,theorganizedwayof thinkinghas helpedmebelievein theexistenceof God,although IcannotseeHim physically.Mylogicscan helpmeunderstandthatGod doesexist,andthenmiraclescan happenbecauseof his verynature.Therefore,reasonhas helpedmearriveat theGod whosuspendsthenaturallawsto achievea givenpurpose.Thisis becausethe reasonallowspeopleto usededuction,logic,andinductionto evaluatetheir faith.

Knowledgeisbasedon perceptionandtheonlymethodthat can helpone acquiretherightperceptionis thereason.Peoplegainknowledgeby observingrealityandusetheir mindsto identifythingsthat theyhaveobservedby collectingperceptual informationon their beliefsuntil theycan comprehendwhattheysee.From thisperspective,reasonis theonlyeffectivetoolthat can helpone in determiningthemostappropriatewayof gatheringperceptual informationandthekindof informationthat one needsto collect.Currently, there is noone(includingthosewhocritique theconceptof reason)doubtsthefactthatknowledgeis subjectto requirementsof rationality (Garrath1). In addition,reasonis theonlytoolthat facilitatesthecollectionof sensorydata that can leadtosomething that is definable,clear,andmeaningful.Therefore,reasonplaysa criticalroleinhelpingpeopleacquirea completeunderstandingof their faith.

Inconclusion,reasonplaysa vitalroleinfacilitatinga completeunderstandingof faith,organizedthinking,findingthepurposeof whatone believesin, andinquiringabout realitiesof faith.Reasonhelpspeoplein collectingknowledgeabout their faithandintegratesthatknowledgewith theknowledgethat theyalreadyhadabout otheraspectsof life.Thisis theessenceof a completeunderstandingof faith.Reasoncan alsobeseenas a processof thinkingthat is purposefulandsystematic.Thesystematicnatureof reasonhelpspeoplein establishingpertinentassociationsbetween variousaspectsof their faith.Moreover,reasonprovokespeopleto observetherealitiesin their surroundings with a criticalmindandevaluatethoserealitiesto derivea meaningthat is usefulto their faith.

Workscited

Garrath,W. Kantaccount of reason.Stanford: Stanford University, 2014. Web.

Hutchins,R. Greatbooks of the western world (54 volumes).New York, NY: Encyclopedia Britannica Incorporation, 2000. Print.

Swindal,J. Faithand reason.Pittsburgh: Duquesne University, 2012. Web.

Tavani,T. “The classic debate on the relationship between faith andreason: Some contemporary challenges from the perspective ofrelativism and postmodernism”. RivierAcademic Journal4.1 (2008): 1-20. Web.