Measuring Faith: Satisfaction Models


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Sep 22, 2013
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Can we measure faith with an analysis of probability models?

Probability Theory tells us that we can predict the outcome of events based on an analysis of the configuration of initial-state variables (by determining the rates and ratios and likelihood of catalytic events).

If it's raining outside, we might say (on faith), "I doubt I will get a cold/flu from walking in the rain today without an umbrella, since I'm feeling very optimistic!" but we might say (with Probability Theory), "There is only a 30% chance I will get a cold/flu from walking in the rain today without an umbrella, since if I walk real fast and am under the rain for a shorter amount of time, the chance that my body will absorb some water-borne cold virus is little!"

How we determine the consequences of our behavior is important for our modern age of contract-based politics and culture (e.g., Wall Street, eTrade, European Union, NATO, etc.).

Perhaps evil is integrally related to speculation --- the assumption of results without any grounding in evidence, precedence, or even prior states of well-being (or 'memories of faith').

When we speculate, we are in danger of imposing our perspective on 'sensible courage' onto others --- e.g., "These African pygmies will surely appreciate modern technology, since Americans love technology!"

Here's a mock-dialogue about probability, faith, and courage between Shiva (Hindu god of destruction) and Pennywise (the fictional demonic clown from the iconic Stephen King pedestrian-horror novel It), two 'folk mythos' avatars who represent differing metaphysical views on 'self-control.'

We could perhaps use such discussions to better evaluate cultural differences between taste and bias (e.g., cuisines, fashion, astrological views, etc.).


SHIVA: Why do human beings love to gamble (e.g., Las Vegas)?
PENNYWISE: Humans despise assuming that fortune is random.
SHIVA: If we assume that fortune can be 'predicted,' we might 'over-speculate' on danger.
PENNYWISE: That's the point. Humans yearn to 'control' danger.
SHIVA: Perhaps those suffering from gambling addictions are 'prophets.'
PENNYWISE: Yes, just as alcoholics were 'prophets' of yesteryear!
SHIVA: Should mathematicians be assigned to measure causality (and consequence)?
PENNYWISE: The basis of science is the desire to predict change.
SHIVA: Perhaps it is best conclude that humans simply 'learn from the past.'
PENNYWISE: History always repeats itself.
SHIVA: Can you measure faith?
PENNYWISE: You can certainly measure dissatisfaction.




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Sep 22, 2013
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Pillars of Passion

The Bible talks about a manslayer who will rise to ominous prominence in a fashion similar to that of the AntiChrist.

Could the AntiChrist and the manslayer be 'book-ends' of a prophetic hell-gate?

Certainly, an adversary of Jesus (the messenger of mercy) and a 'diplomat of murder' (and hence a bane for cops) would doubly confound our sense of civics coordination.

If we look at the comic book super-villains Scarecrow (a masked freak who wields 'fear-toxins') and Magneto (a mutant who controls magnetism like a terrorist), we find characters who signify social anxieties about spiritual happiness and physical power. We find such characters/avatars interesting, since we are curious about 'behavioral etiquette.'

It is difficult to 'analyze etiquette' without a thorough 'hypothesis' about decisions and consequences, and such a 'hypothesis' is difficult to construct without an adequate examination of rationalism (and hence probability and faith).

Perhaps there's a way to coordinate spiritualism with creative detective-work.



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Mar 28, 2014
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from 'Lectures on Faith' by Joseph Smith we learn:

1. Faith being the first principle in revealed religion, and
the foundation of all righteousness, necessarily claims the first
place in a course of lectures which are designed to unfold to the
understanding the doctrine of Jesus Christ.

2. In presenting the subject of faith, we shall observe the
following order —

3. First, faith itself — what it is.

4. Secondly, the object on which it rests. And,

5. Thirdly, the effects which flow from it.

6. Agreeable to this order we have first to show what faith

7. The author of the epistle to the Hebrews, in the eleventh
chapter of that epistle and first verse, gives the following defini-
tion of the word faith :

8. "Now faith is the substance (assurance) of things hoped
for, the evidence of things not seen."

9. From this we learn that faith is the assurance which men
have of the existence of things which they have not seen, and the
principle of action in all intelligent beings.

10. If men were duly to consider themselves, and turn
their thoughts and reflections to the operations of their own
minds, they would readily discover that it is faith, and faith only,
which is the moving cause of all action in them; that without
it both mind and body would be in a state of inactivity, and all
their exertions would cease, both physical and mental.

11. Were this class to go back and reflect upon the history of
their lives, from the period of their first recollection, and ask
themselves what principle excited them to action, or what gave
them energy and activity in all their lawful avocations, callings,
and pursuits, what would be the answer ? Would it not be that it
was the assurance which they had of the existence of things
which they had not seen as yet ? Was it not the hope which you
had, in consequence of your belief in the existence of unseen
things, which stimulated you to action and exertion in order to
obtain them? Are you not dependent on your faith, or belief,
for the acquisition of all knowledge, wisdom, and intelligence?
Would you exert yourselves to obtain wisdom and intelligence,
unless you did believe that you could obtain them ? Would you
have ever sown, if you had not believed that you would reap?
Would you have ever planted, if you had not believed that you
would gather? Would you have ever asked, unless you had
believed that you would receive? Would you have ever sought,
unless you had believed that you would have found? Or, would
you have ever knocked, unless you had believed that it would
have been opened unto you? ln a word, is there anything that
you would have done either physical or mental, if you had not
previously believed? Are not all your exertions of every kind,
dependent on your faith ? Or, may we not ask, what have you,
or what do you possess, which you have not obtained by reason
of your faith? Your food, your raiment, your lodgings, are
they not all by reason of your faith? Reflect, and ask yourselves
if these things are not so. Turn your thoughts on your own
minds, and see if faith is not the moving cause of all action
in yourselves; and, if the moving cause in you, is not in all
other intelligent beings ?

12. And as faith is the moving cause of all action in temp-
oral concerns, so it is in spiritual; for the Saviour has said,
and that truly, that "He that believeth and is baptized, shall be
saved." Mark xvi. 16.

13. As we receive by faith all temporal blessings that we
do receive, so we in like manner receive by faith all spiritual
blessings that we do receive. But faith is not only the principle
of action, but of power also, in all intelligent beings, whether
in heaven or on earth. Thus says the author of the epistle to the
Hebrews, xi. 3:

14. "Through faith we understand that the worlds were
framed by the word of God ; so that things which are seen were
not made of things which do appear."

15. By this we understand that the principle of power
which existed in the bosom of God, by which the worlds were
framed, was faith ; and that it is by reason of this principle of
power existing in the Deity, that all created things exist ; so that
all things in heaven, on earth, or under the earth exist by reason
of faith as it existed in Him.

16. Had it not been for the principle of faith the worlds
would never have been framed neither would man have been
formed of the dust. It is the principle by which Jehovah works,
and through which he exercises power over all temporal as well
as eternal things. Take this principle or attribute — for it is an
attribute — from the Deity, and he would cease to exist.

17. Who cannot see, that if God framed the worlds by
faith, that it is by faith that he exercises power over them, and
that faith is the principle of power? And if the principle of pow-
er, it must be so in man as well as in the Deity? This is the
testimony of all the sacred writers, and the lesson which they
have been endeavouring to teach to man.

18. The Saviour says (Matthew xvii. 19, 20), in explaining
the reason why the disciples could not cast out the devil, that it
was because of their unbelief — "For verily I say unto you"
(said he), "if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall
say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place,' and it
shall remove ; and nothing shall be impossible unto you."​


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Sep 22, 2013
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Architectural Agoraphobia

I like doodling about metaphysics connectivity. What do people think about Matrix Math?

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