Can freethinkers believe a religion?
It has been suggested that this should be deleted, please discuss this on the talk page. A very large part of this article was apparently written by one or more Christian apologists but Proxima Centauri has decided to edit it and try to refute the arguments rather than deleting. Educated people who think objectively know that the Scientific method is the best way of getting to the truth. Some Christians or others who follow faith based systems try to reconcile their beliefs with science though objective people are likely to find such efforts futile. Different religions and different sects all find superficially reasonable grounds for favouring their particular faith based system and all these mutually contradictory beliefs cannot be true simultaneously.
"Free-thinking Christians" attempt as they see it to expand the horizons of their religious beliefs by welcoming the argumentation of atheists and those opposed to their own views, in hope of finding truth.
It is claimed that a group called Crisp was created by Brian Glenney, Ph.D., a professor of philosophy at Gordon College, in response to the Bright vs. Super debate. As the traditional stance of the Supers does not uphold the integrity of the intellectual Christian, and the stance of the Brights neglects any belief in the supernatural, the Crisp movement, is one that searches for a middle ground. It is a community that allegedly welcomes debate and looks to establish a place for those with opposing religious and nonreligious axioms to coexist.
The Crisp desires to assess current Christian doctrine with the goal of reinterpreting questionable beliefs. Under non-Crisp thinking, a theological position is accurate if it satisfies four necessary and jointly sufficient conditions:
1) internal consistency
2) harmony with scripture/tradition
3) external consistency with other theological positions
4) comports as a full account
A "free-thinking Christian" views these absolute conditions as being revisable. A theological belief should still be (1) consistent with itself (free from contradiction), but does not necessarily need to be (2) harmonious with a specific biblical interpretation.
New prospects are welcome. If a Crisp develops a new position that is inconsistent with other doctrines (3), these doctrines are now open to revision as well. Prospective beliefs will still need to comport a full account (4), meaning that no major questions should be left unanswerable by the new position.
Can Religious believers be freethinkers?
Freethought and the Scientific method is the best way of arriving at the truth but no human being is infallible, those who try to think scientifically sometimes disagree with each other. People sometimes decide that rational evidence supports Deism or supports one or other religious belief system. Such people may be mistaken but may also be freethinkers.
If you keep a truly open mind people will pour all sorts of stuff into it.
The above has been said before and it is true. People sometimes sincerely try to listen or to read with an open mind and do not know that the message they are getting is biased, states only what supports a particular case and overlooks what opposes their case. People who try to listen or to read with an open mind may not even realise that the message they are getting includes outright lies. The best way to protect oneself from biased religious or other propaganda is to read both sides of a debate.