In the context to a belief in God the word “faith” has become in some atheist circles to meaning believing in something where there is no evidence. This definition is gaining wider acceptance.
Yet in almost most every other context use of the word faith goes hand in hand with evidence.
For example we express faith in a friend or spouse not in the back drop of no evidence but because of it.
We have faith in an institution because of past evidence of it’s action and or use of it’s power.
This mixed use of the word does not help anyone and is abused on both sides.
Religions mistakenly hide behind a mantra of requiring more faith when faced with some view or evidence that challenges a certain ritual, culture or belief that they feel to be central to the core of their religion.
But this is the wrong response and I stand in the atheist camp in regards to all things in our life should be rooted in evidence and be rational. We may argue over the validity or relevance of such evidence but it is required all the same. Otherwise we open ourselves up to all sorts of abuse and control that is unhealthy and all to common.
However I do stand against the view that faith as defined as a belief in something in the face of no evidence, is not a reflection of the everyday use and understanding of the word. To my mind this redefinition of faith is a way to try and divide and marginalize certain groups and is not helpful.
Engage, debate, respect and be gracious! We are all on the same journey.