The quote singled out in this blog post is from one of my favorite books, The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts. I expect eyebrows to go up at the mention of his name and I admit being pretty dismissive of a lot of his eastern vs western philosophy/religion. But that book meant an enormous amount to me when I read it in my mid-twenties and has influenced me greatly, for the better I hope.
I post it here because I see your mission here and the attitudes of the great majority of you as exhibiting faith in the best sense that Watts articulates here:
Belief, as I use the word here, is the insistence that the truth is what one would “lief” or wish it to be. The believer will open his mind to the truth on the condition that it fits in with his preconceived ideas and wishes. Faith, on the other hand, is an unreserved opening of the mind to the truth, whatever it may turn out to be. Faith has no preconceptions; it is a plunge into the unknown. Belief clings, but faith lets go. In this sense of the word, faith is the essential virtue of science, and likewise of any religion that is not self-deception.
As further incentive to give it a look I can tell you there are only two more paragraphs from the book quoted, as well as a little more at the beginning of the paragraph I’ve drawn from. I encourage you to skip over the blogger’s own introduction since you’ve already had to get through my own. Oh, and here is part of the last sentence from the last paragraph included which may help you see why I so much appreciate this website of yours:
… it seems, after all, surprising that learned theologians should adopt anything but a cooperative attitude towards the critical philosophy of science.