Originally Posted by Agoraphobic
Thread source (SBY): Accounts and teachings of ALL religious institutions should be open to public scrutiny/ inspection (just like public listed companies)
Perhaps you mean "hope" when you refer to "faith."
Let's keep things simple, "faith" is belief that is not based on proof. But if people choose to have faith, that is their choice as far as I'm concerned.
In the vernacular (secular definition), some people ask "what is your faith": which in this case, means: " what is your religion".
The bible definition, according to Hebrews 1:11, just using the New International Version translation as example: "Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see": defines faith as the 'confidence'/ 'assurance'.
All actions (buy canned food, cross street, take aeroplane ride, get married ), religions (mainstream) etc are premised upon some form of confidence leading to hope in the action (decision, conduct, ritual etc) thus taken.
So whilst U seem to prefer understanding the term 'faith' as equating to the term (noun) 'religion', the proper definition of the term 'faith' (even as explained in Hebrews 1:11) is more likely akin to the both ubiquitous, organic and broad use of the term 'confidence'.
Of course, there can be false confidence as there is false hope (/false religion too). In every case therefore, according to the proper use of the term 'faith' as I believe: the devil lies in the details: what are the facts behind the situation, what is the explanation (reasons) for the conclusion based upon the facts presented: are the facts complete and the reasons robust?
Just as confidence is most times based upon some reason if not proof no matter how vague, so is 'faith': being a synonym of the word 'confidence'. Your sweeping assertion that "faith is flawed", with the exception of any substantiation, is presumptuous and arrogant if not wrong.
IMHO, reading the bible DOES improve one's command of the English language, if not one's reasoning skills. If U wish to improve your reasoning skills to exceed the current, perhaps starting to read the bible more often might be good for you.