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Please be upstanding.

Deogolwulf wishs to coin a new word:
overstand, vt. To subordinate sense and reason to faith; not to understand the world, but rather to interpret the world through faith in something higher, greater, ‘more real-worldly’ than the world; to interpret according to faith and not evidence; to believe that something is the case irrespective of evidence; to make facts subordinate to an inscrutable purpose and an ineffable standard.
Science is an attempt to understand the world; religion, an attempt to overstand it.


Seconded. An excellent definition.

Wonderful. Yet another way in which sneering materialists can flaunt their sense of superiority over religious people. Next stop, declaring that, since a gene has been found which 'allows religious experience' all religious people are genetically defective and should be cleansed from society.

Dear Dumb Brit,

While I was writing the post in which I used the word "overstand", I was aware that some might think me a "sneering materialist". Though it is all the rage amongst the "tough-minded", sneering at faith and religion per se is not my aim, and I tried to make some indication in my post that it is not. Rather, my target was the confusion of science with religion, and knowledge with faith.

All I meant to suggest was that knowledge of the material world is gained through understanding it, not "overstanding" it. I think most religionists would agree. A belief in what lies behind the world (divine purpose, etc) is properly a matter not of knowledge, but of faith. I happen to be agnostic on this. To point out what faith is, however, is not to disparage it -- rather it is to say that faith is not a result of understanding.

Dumb Brit's post is a model of how not to comment.
Empty sarcasm? "Wonderful". Yup.
Sort of emotional language that sounds like Mr or Mrs Peeved at their first marital counselling session? "Sneer", "flaunt", "sense of superiority"? Yup.
Hyperbolic misuse of badly digested science to make an anti-science "point"? Yup, see rest of post.
Inadvertently confirming the essence of the original post? Yessss!


I notice your Typekey profile is as empty as your comment.

Those of us who use our real names have no need for typekey profiles. I am easily checked in Amazon's fabulous remaindered authors section:)

Deogol, thanks for your post. I apologise for jumping in without first looking to see your post in its entirety.

Having said that, however, I think your definition (or, at least, that version of it presented by The Englishman) needs work as it doesn't seem to correspond at all well with what I know religion (at least, that religion to which I belong) to be.

Apology accepted!

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