Belief versus faith - reading Alan Watts

01 August 2018

After three years and one false start, I have finally gotten around to sitting down and reading some Alan Watts.

I’m starting with Wisdom of Insecurity: A Message for an Age of Anxiety.

We must make a clear distinction between belief and faith, because, in general practice, belief has come to mean a state of mind which is almost the opposite of faith. Belief, as I use the word here, is the insistence that the truth is what one would “like” or wish it to be. The believer will open his mind to the truth on condition that it fits in with his preconceived ideas and wishes. Faith, on the other hand, is an unreserved opening of the mind to truth, whatever it may turn out to be.

Being open to uncertainty, creating space for the unknowable is a practice I’m becoming increasingly aware of.