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Critical Thinking

The definition for Critical Thinking is as follows; "the mental process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating information to reach an answer or conclusion"

Personally, I think objectivity and critical thinking are synonymous.

Objectivity is defined as; " 1. The state or quality of being objective: 2. intentness on objects external to the mind.3. external reality.

When I "de-converted" from being a believer, I employed critical thinking in my quest for truth. 

How do you, as a believer, employ critical thinking/objective evaluation when it comes to a god, holy spirit, Christ, etc, when part of the definition refers to intentness on objects external to the mind? 

Does anyone think it is not possible to use objective evaluation when looking to conclude  something regarding supernatural/metaphysical?



Asked by clarity333 at 4:11 PM on Jun. 24, 2011 in Religious Debate

Level 22 (13,098 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (69)
  • OED:

    Pronunciation:/tro͞oTH, /
    noun (plural truths /tro͞oT͟Hz, tro͞oTHs/)

    the quality or state of being true:he had to accept the truth of her accusation
    (also the truth) that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality: tell me the truth, she found out the truth about him
    a fact or belief that is accepted as true: the emergence of scientific truths

    Some people seem to add their own definition, transforming "truth" into "belief", which is really just an opinion.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 5:11 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • Is there a difference between "truth as they see it" and the truth?

    A very obvious one, but I'd hate to be seen as picking on someone for pointing out the obvious lapse in their logic, thereby defaming an entire faith by proxy.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 4:37 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • Someone willingly using a colloquialism in the place of the intended meaning doesn't change the meaning of the word. Semantics aside, this is a diversion from the true question - how does critical thinking apply to faith? It's even more interesting when you consider no two people who claim to share the same faith can even agree on what that faith is before critically examining it.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 6:00 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • You only presented a very narrow definition of truth

    I presented the Oxford English Dictionary definition, the one that actually defines the English language. Just because someone on Wikipedia likes to believe truth and opinion are synonymous, does not change the actual OED definition, any more than someone who thinks a stool can be called a chair would change the OED definitions of stool and chair.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 5:52 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • I have a logical view of a very personal experience that happened to me that affirmed my faith. I understand being a believer is based on faith, I can't scientifically prove what I believe.  However I do truly believe that there is more to the universe that we can see or know in this life, and I believe in an afterlife and a force at work with us in this life.  My life experienceshave helped affirm all this to me, I have to wait until I die for the rest to be revealed, I'm okay with that I have enough for now.  My faith and my knowledge of the work around me have never been at odds.  I can objectively evaluate the known world around me and still have faith in God.


    Answer by RyansMom001 at 6:05 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • big smile mini


    Answer by jsbenkert at 4:26 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • That doesn't matter. If I'm offended by something you wrote, does it matter whether your question can be objectively regarded as offensive?

    Okay.  I'm done being silly for now.  To answer your question. . . like you, critical thinking led me to realize that I could no longer believe in a supernatural being or participate in the rituals of religion.  I don't think that religion is something that can be looked at objectively and still be followed with sincerity.  I think that people will claim to have looked at their religions objectively and still believe, but I think it's a stretch.  I don't think it's really possible to use critical thinking and objectivity and still "believe", since faith and facts don't exist peacefully together--one always trumps the other.


    Answer by jsbenkert at 4:39 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • As an aside, this question amuses me because, in the context of my own, there's an old saying that if someone discovered a book that changed every rule of Heathenry, we'd change the rules as soon as it was authenticated. Dabblers aside, research is the religion.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 4:52 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • I don't think you're wrong, Clarity. I think we were saying about the same thing; Kristi just delved a little deeper.

    Answer by jsbenkert at 4:55 PM on Jun. 24, 2011

  • Kids can learn epistemology and still have a religious background. I teach my kids to question, our faith isn't at odds with this or science, because we understand that there is a difference between faith and science.

    You're only teaching one line of thinking to your children. Abstract thinking is a very important part of human development. You need logical thinking to run and evaluate an experiment, but abstract thinking is often needed to develop the hypothesis in the first place. 


    Answer by RyansMom001 at 7:22 PM on Jun. 24, 2011