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Discussion 1 to Talk Back 75
It's not who; it's what

by JT

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Joan:

No doubt the behaviour of some of those who call themselves Christians does make some people question their faith. However every belief system has those who only give it lip service. Every system of morality, whether religiously based or secular, has those who proclaim it publicly, and privately are hypocrites. We should be able to differentiate between the individuals and the underlying beliefs which they ignore. So, while a bad example might make someone question their faith, it is only by scrutiny of what that faith entails that faith might be restored or lost.

The basis of disbelief is not the bad examples, but the beliefs themselves. I, for one, find the basic beliefs of Christianity unbelievable. And if you had written as a Muslim telling me to ignore the bad Muslims and give Muhammad a chance, I would likewise say I find the basic beliefs of Islam unbelievable.

Agnosticism is not a statement of our feelings about the followers of various religions, even though I do level criticisms at them on this site. Agnosticism is a statement about what we know about the existence of a deity. Whether some of a religion's followers are hypocritical or profoundly devout, whether they are bad examples or good examples, the question of a god's verifiable existence remains unanswered.