What faith is not based on The claims of religious belief and faith are not established by science or scientific investigation. Whatever is ‘known’ in faith is not known scientifically. Nor is faith secured by rational arguments for the existence of God.
What faith is based on Whatever we know in faith, we know through our emotions. ‘Religious experience’ and faith involve an emotional response to existence itself, to the nature of human life, etc.
Emotions are not ‘just’ feelings Emotions are (usually) about something, and they present whatever they are about in a certain light. E.g. I feel repulsed by a slug, I experience it as disgusting. I feel angry at a remark, I experience it as insulting.
Emotions respond to values An emotion is a response to the values that thing has. We cannot show the existence of values scientifically. But we constantly respond to them.
The foundation of faith Faith is not belief based on empirical experience (the five senses). Yet it does claim to be about the world (e.g. that God exists, loves us, etc.). Faith is a response to the fundamental value of God/existence. Faith experiences existence in the light of God (intention, purpose, goodness, meaning).
Knowing God through feeling The kind of knowledge – of values – that emotions give us is not possible to have any other way. Faith - knowledge of God - is only possible through our emotional response to God and existence.
What is the right emotional response to existence? But the emotional response of faith justified? Or is agnosticism or even atheism more appropriate? We often have inappropriate emotions, e.g. we get angry at people when we shouldn’t, upset about things that don’t really matter. Does religious faith invest existence with values it doesn’t have?