In the science forums here, Faith needs evidence. That's the rules.
Among those who believe in Biblical inerrancy a reference to the Bible may be all the evidence required - but even then quote mining or misrepresentation should not be tolerated, let alone appeals to a scripture that she thinks exists somewhere in the book.
And what justifies Faiths anger ? It's far from always disagreement with the Bible. Very often it is disagreement with her opinions or defeating her arguments. Do you think that those are matters of deep religious significance to her ? Is her pride in herself her religion ? Is that what you mean by challenges to her faith ?
quote: How should creationists defend their faith and still represent science?
If the basis of Creationist belief is religious SHOULD they try to argue the science ?
Surely they should argue about what they understand best rather than trying to bully the better-informed into agreeing with ill-founded and often ignorant opinions. And if they do not understand their religious foundations then they should work hard on those.
Really, if they could show that God wrote Genesis 1 as a literal account of the creation they would have made their case.
I don't think that Phat is saying that faith has to contradict science, instead addressing the cases where it does.
To the rest, I would offer one point of disagreement. Even faith should be constrained by logic. The "free pass" doesn't get past absolute impossibilities.
Also, the "free pass" does not extend beyond personal belief. It should be obvious that arguments based on faith can only convince those who share that faith. Beyond that, there are those who claim that faith is based in evidence. Those people are simply throwing their free pass away.
quote: As for quote mining and misrepresentation, I can only say that I go into a mine to find valuable nuggets. In the process I am forced to sift through a lot of rock. The same holds true in any book. In order to support my argument, I look for the best words, phrases, passages or statements that accomplish this.
Looking for quotes that honestly support your case is rather different from quote-mining - looking for quotes to misrepresent. If you are only concerned with winning an argument and don't care about the truth of the matter, or the ethics of honest discussion, it,s not really faith that is the issue, is it ?
quote: No but they may convince me through their actions. They would stand out from the normal and the average.
I'm sure that there have been exceptional Muslims - and Hindus and Buddhists, and many other religions can claim the same. I would say that that undermines any exclusivist religion - at least if you take it as having any great significance.
Faith often takes the form of a strong bias or prejudice. OK you are free to have biases and prejudices but it is foolish to be blind to them, as the faithful often are.
For instance a believer might take an unlikely or strained reading of a Biblical prophecy, so that he might interpret it as fulfilled. I'd disagree with that but won't say that nobody can believe it. The problem comes when the believer tries to use the assumed success of the prophecy as evidence for their faith. Since the "success" is largely assumed on the basis of faith the argument contains a vicious circularity - and is obviously going to fail to convince anyone who is even moderately sceptical.
And it can get worse than that. Some believers have a rule that Biblical prophecies MUST be interpreted as succeeding - and that that factor overrules all other considerations. Even worse some actually expect unbelievers to conform to this rule and reject perfectly sensible readings unless they can show that the prophecy succeeded !
Faith is sometimes blind - and even worse, it can be a blinder. And that really isn't good if you want to make a rational case for your belief.
quote: Our argument is that belief needs to be respected rather than simply dismissed without evidence
That depends on what you mean by respect. And the beliefs. And what you mean by "simply dismissed without evidence". Certainly the absence of evidence is not a reason for anyone else to accept a belief. In fact I would go further. Given the ridiculously large number of possibilities that can be made to fit the evidence it seems to be necessary to discard a great number of those possibilities without evidence. Evidence is required for belief far more than for disbelief.
But all too often believers object to people who prefer to follow the evidence. Some believers are honest enough to accept this. Other believers are not at all honest. And I do not accept that dishonesty and deception deserve respect.
quote: Your argument is that science by definition rejects and dismisses a myriad of things on a regular basis
As it must do, although most of them are never formulated.
But I think the most important thing to point out is that there is a huge difference between dismissing a belief and pointing out that it is not scientific. YECs would do better to honestly embrace the fact that their beliefs are contrary to science rather than falsely insisting otherwise, no matter what advantage they hope to gain.