SONGSOPTOK: Belief is simple acceptance that a proposition is true, without regard to reason(s) while faith is the acceptance of a proposition rather than an epistemological (evidence-based) reason.” Does this reflect your understanding of the two words? If so, why? If not, then how would you distinguish between the two?

MICHAEL MILLER: No, it does not for me, while people of the nations suppose many things are true and accept them (believe) for me to believe I have to have evidence before I will make the statement that it "is true". While I like many tentatively accept some things such as universal laws such as in the cosmos, I remain in the state of it's theory until sufficiently researched, and that also remains true as to Faith. The "biblical" perspective on faith that was taught by Paul is that in the book to the Hebrews Chapter 11 verse 1: Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen. (Such as air you cannot "see" it but you have tangible evidence that it is real and reliable). As the substance of the things we believe it must follow that there is real physical matter in that what we perceive to be true has real definable characteristics.

SONGSOPTOK: Each person can inherit, adopt or construct her own set of beliefs and faiths, or it is a combination of the two. How would you qualify your own personal set? Were your faiths and beliefs handed down to you by someone? Who? Or were they acquired? If so, how?

MICHAEL MILLER: Most of us do inherit and adopt what has been set forth by our forebears, but my family was full of unmitigated prevaricators , so the question of whether I believed anything they said came under full scrutiny . Also while it is taught that this is a Christian Nation all that I have sought to learn about those concepts here compared to what "the book" actually teaches is  greatly conflicted and in actuality much of what is taught in those "theological" schools is more directly from ancient pagan religions than from "the book" itself . I would say to date that I have researched and acquired a set of perspectives based not on what surrounds me but my own dedicated pursuit to it's study. (Which is still and will always be in a state of study)

SONGSOPTOK: In your own personal sphere, do you consider worship as a religious act involving rites, rituals or other types of practices? Or is it related to something that transcends religion? Can you explain your position with some examples?

MICHAEL MILLER: No, absolutely not . Worship for me would be absolute loyalty and dedication to a set of standards and laws that affect our own characters and behaviors both as to self and to others.  I'm of the opinion that to cut a tree down or use metal to fashion a figure for the purpose of "prayer" is of no value. It cannot see, nor hear, nor think, one fashions a god or idol with one and supposes it can answer, then takes the other half and burn it for warmth or fashions "accessories for personal use. While "some" may find "comfort" in rituals, they in fact hold little value in developing our characters, the only benefit I could even possibly stretch it would be that of "consistency".  Does wearing a "cross" make any of those professing "Christianity" a better person (or is it rather worn to be seen) and not rather devotion to a set of standards with regard to our treatment of Life .

SONGSOPTOK: “Faith takes over where reason leaves off” – do you agree? Can you explain your point of view?

MICHAEL MILLER: Absolutely No. Faith is something that is built upon discernible substance. As in the above quote from the "biblical" perspective, I don't believe it just because someone says so.  While we may take the reliability of the sun rising every day, when we become well studied we "understand" that there are actual realities that preserve it's course, as well as all of Life’s motions that exist  in well definable laws and are trackable. Therefore I would state it is fully based on reason and conclusions based in realities.

SONGSOPTOK: Did you ever face a conflict between your beliefs, reason and knowledge? How do you react to such situations?

MICHAEL MILLER: Rarely, since I consider myself a student (a child in the cosmos) I expect those things that have been absorbed from childhood to come under scrutiny somewhere in life. Also I expect to keep learning and eliminating what I have been taught that may be full of error as well as acquiring more certain and definable information. It is factual that in a cosmos with more information than can even be obtained in one lifetime that learning will continue and even if we lived "many lifetimes" there would still be more than enough to keep us in "learning mode".

SONGSOPTOK: Are you a believer? What do you believe in?

MICHAEL MILLER: Definitely Yes. There can only be one creator (and to define that would be like trying to quantify how much energy exists in the cosmos) and from the biblical perspective that one is the "FATHER" of all Life including us. That we are the Children of Life, and like it we relentlessly pursue all that it has to offer. That we are "imperfect" due to inherited misinformation set out by those who desire to be our Masters. That we are capable of far more than we know but we have "bad teachers" and a serious lack of correct information.  That we have been enslaved to ideology that has put mankind on a course of destruction of both himself and the finest little blue marble in "our" solar system . That there are "others" who have life besides that which live on this little blue terraformed planet for which we are well designed to live upon. Also great deal many things other than these, which may "morph" over time .

SONGSOPTOK: Do you think that it is essential to convince and convert others to your own system of beliefs and faiths? Why? Can you please describe the reasons for your answer?

MICHAEL MILLER: I think it's essential for everyone to feel free to discuss anything they wish, with whomever they wish, anytime they wish pending another is inclined to be of like mind or up for the discussion. Force rarely works in any case and usually further repels anyone who might actually be of a reasoning mind and is usually implemented by Pontificators. I would say most of us are inclined to be repulsed by someone "who thinks they know it all already”.

SONGSOPTOK: Do you think that each individual has some form of faith or belief, whether related to religion or not? If yes, then what do you think are the main reasons?

MICHAEL MILLER: Yes, even if it's inconsistent, wavering, a belief in "no belief" . Our minds are designed to seek information and implement it even if it's not correct, we seek patterns in everything and the nature is full of them and our own nature seeks them out and categorizes them.  Some of us love this and find it most fascinating. (Some more than others) (We are discussing  adults aren't we ??? hahaha)

SONGSOPTOK: “A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell.” said C.S. Lewis. Do you agree with this view? Or do you think that some form of worship is indispensable for humans? Why?

MICHAEL MILLER: I have read much of C.S Lewis and enjoyed it. Whatever we may think (and I don't agree with all he has written) that is something many will have to determine for themselves. While I will continue to pursue knowledge and make alterations to that information , I "suspect" we have much more to learn and that we will find that reverence for the glory of Life , Truth , and becoming brothers and sisters in that pursuit . As to worship , adore , love then yes I most implicitly think yes , the more I love the more I can adore about Life , men pursue love and being loved as part and parcel of our very being (so , in fact we are indeed created in the "image" of God in that respect should you care to consider it )

SONGSOPTOK: You may or may not choose to answer this – but nevertheless we would like to know who do you worship? Why do you worship? How do you worship? And above all, in what way does it help you in your everyday life?

MICHAEL MILLER: Yes I can answer, but as stated above how can one quantify what God is . The biblical narrative had given that one a name but due to the superstitions of the Jews it has been lost though many feel sufficiently confidant to give that one a name. Jesus’ advise was just to use "Father" after all that's what we use in our own "families" , we don't normally call our parents by their first names or even their surnames , The biblical perspective is that "no man has seen God" (indeed only "servants" of God , or those opposing God) .I Love what I have learned , I hope to implement that which has been taught to me Jesus said to keep on seeking , same as keep on  learning , as long as I have a functional mind I intend to do just that , besides I love being a student and of course that means further discussion on so very many things from science to philosophy , morality , understanding  any and everything which we can learn, after all that's what inquisitive children  do . (YHWH)

We sincerely thank you for your time and hope we shall have your continued support.
Aparajita Sen

(Editor: Songsoptok)


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