Something to think about:

There has been quite a conversation ongoing here in recent days about the place of beliefs within the human experience.

There are those who say that the holding of any belief whatsoever is the problem with the human species, and is what renders us so dysfunctional. Every conclusion human beings come to should be based on observable and hopefully replicable evidence, they suggest, or should be rejected out of hand as inadmissible in any serious discussion or decision.

I find this a fascinating point of view — and I see much merit in personally and privately insisting within ourselves that some form of evidence be present with regard to the things we that say are so before we make a definite assertion about it.

On the other hand, I sincerely wonder if taking such a position with dogmatic rigidity and without exception eliminates from genuine consideration in our lives a good deal of what could turn out to be highly useful and extremely beneficial information — to say nothing of greatly reducing the possibility of wondrous experiences.

I think of First Love, for example. When someone says “I love you” to us, I assume that in most cases we have at least a little background and/or evidence upon which to make a judgment as to whether it is true. But what about the person who says it to us for the first time? Do we respond by saying: “Prove it”— ? Or do we accept it on face value because we “believe” it to be true?

Yet on what basis do we foundation our belief? Could it be, heaven forbid, that we “have faith” in what we’ve heard, and accept it without a shred of evidence? I want to suggest that more than a few wonderful life partnerships have been inspired and initiated by such a “belief.”

So I wonder: Is it possible that we can “know” things that we have no evidence to support, and that we can actually turn out to be “right” about that? Can we intuit things? Can we simply “feel” that something is true — and can that feeling reveal a validity that only later is found to be supported by “evidence”? Or, for that matter, that is never supported by any evidence, save one’s internal experience?

Is there any value at all in taking anything on faith? I ask this question sincerely, not as a smarmy inquiry meant to presuppose a “right” answer. I ask sincerely: Where does Evidence-Free Internal Experience fit into the Protocol or Convention of those who say that Only That Which is Factually Supported and Physically Provable is a Legitimate Entry into the ledger of Beneficial Human Encounter?

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