Orson Scott Card: Exploring faith and knowledge

It has become almost a requirement that when we bear our testimonies, we don't say, "I believe," but rather, "I know."

It is as if we had decided, collectively, that faith were not enough.

Yet it is faith, far more than knowledge, that the scriptures urge us to acquire.

Is there even a difference? At first glance, the difference might seem huge. Knowledge is certain! Doesn't that imply that anything less than knowledge contains some degree of uncertainty?

OK, Alice, it's time to go down the rabbit hole! Because this is where the craziness starts.

Let's start with the scriptural definition of "truth": "knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come" (Doctrine and Covenants 93:24). As a young student I was bothered by the circularity of the definition — we say we "know" something when our belief is true; how, then, can we define "truth" as knowledge?

Now I understand how Joseph Smith had to struggle with the inadequacy of language in order to explain even the most simple ideas to us.

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