I think it is possible to answer the question without overlaying it with a religious spin; that's why I posted it as G Knowledge. However, I'l work through some of your ideas: It might be argued that faith only works when blind. When doubt is removed, faith becomes confidence, perhaps. Think of going to hospital for a life-saving operation (previously known as miracle, maybe!). If you have no knowledge of surgery or medicine, and know nothing of the surgeon's personal success rate in the procedure or the outcome chances, you are obliged to place blind faith in the surgeon - even if his personal success rate is well under the average. You are highly likely to pray, regardless of whether a deity might be listening to you or not. If you survive, you are likely to credit your deity rather than the surgeon, I suggest. If you have studied the surgical and medical background and compared your surgeon's success rates with others, or he has demonstrated to you that his reputation is well-deserved, you will likely be more confident and relaxed, less tempted to pray - and without stress, you may be more likely to survive - and you will be more likely to thank the surgeon than the deity, perhaps, depending on how strong your religious faith was in the first place. Contrast this with a simpler case. E.coli is a normal part of the flora of the human gut; Salmonella is normal in the chicken gut (hence food hygiene practices); Clostrium tetani in horses and cattle - hence in rural communities that have changed little since biblical times, where dung is a key fertiliser e.g. Saharan Africa, the death rate is high. So high that tetanus remains the 8th most deadly human infection at 0.5M cases a year, despite tetanus in vaccinated populations elsewhere being extremely rare. If a doctor tells you that vaccination will prevent you getting the disease and you don't, although his prophecy is sound, you won't see the doctor as a holy man unless a faith has been mentioned. If you already have a faith, and the doctor has admitted non-belief, you might thank your god for his/her mercy, or simply fail to notice in your old age that you never caught tetanus (lockjaw - the symptoms are obvious). If you were treated by a missionary, and were a recent convert, the fact of the outcome might appear due to the missionary having been sent to you by the god they represent - a reward for your conversion and future good behaviour. 'The truth' therefore depends on your insight, because only Comprehensive Knowledge, or a reasonable level of enlightenment arrived at by considering those parts of 'the truth' that are currently available to you. Except for those technologies where we can say with 100% confidence that the outcome will always be the same, whether or not you have a faith - e.g. A kettle will always boil given sufficient heat - there is an element of doubt. Where the element of doubt is large, e.g. will a wind part the Red Sea on a given day, people who don't know that it may have happened before under particular conditions will have insuffient data to believe it even if you told them in advance. Their faith in you would have to be blind even if you told them that a deity had told you. Success would be miraculous and inspiring. Even modern armies have priests to tell them God is on their side, because it is very comforting to know that your death will be just a stepping stone to paradise and you will be less likely to run away. In most old texts, the wars were often seen as a test of a deity's worth, but the dead don't write history and we rarely have both sides of the story - and we assume the success must speak for itself. Part of the success of the Islamic expansion through N Africa to Spain was due to the opposing army being fearful that their faith might be misplaced. Blind faith was victorious... until the other side thought about it for a while and then reversed things a bit. This is suspicious in itself: if one god were stronger than another, how can he be better in one year than the other; and if they were the same god by different names, why was the outcome not a stalemate? If no god was actually involved, but one army's faith was stronger than another, then assuming no technology difference in arms/armour, you might predict success simply because the super-faithful would be more diligent in training and weapon maintenance - after all, no-oe would want to have a finger pointed at them and be accused of being the sinful one, the one who was off doing something naughty when he should have been in a training session or sharpening his scimitar. In considering how any particular action has come to be regarded as sinful, you have to put yourself in the midset of the times and look around the environment. Neither religious nor secular laws come about unless there has previously been a problem leading to disorder. Hence the phrase 'law and order'.... You can legislate for diseases you can see or deduce - leprosy, food poisoning - but not the ones you can't. Hence epilepsy and mental illness were deemed to be negative gifts from a god, either as a punishment or a lesson to others - without today's technologies, you were in darkness, blind to possibility, and random deaths were inexplicable. Even in Victorian times, death by 'lump on throat' was written as the cause of death on the certificate. The level of change in the last 100y has been exponential and without precendent in human history. Faith has ever been our defence mechanism in times of uncertainty, it's the most common method for dealing with it that we've ever been taught.
Do schools not cure ignorance? Maybe not always, and some even appear to teach it, perhaps. The problem is more with the ignorant refusing to read, listen, see or learn. Odd, because many Great people caused the curing of ignorance across entire cultures. Trouble is, most of the people thought that was it, they didn't realise it was meant to be an ongoing process. They always wanted to give something better for their children, but somehow ended up giving them the same as their parents had given them. It all worked fine until there was just a whole lot more stuff to learn than anyone had previously imagined. And it grew too fast for the original teaching institutions to keep up - even though they made spectacular efforts in the 11th century after one man able to translate Arabic into Latin enabled the systematic transfer of Islamic medicine into Christian Europe - where it was renamed Christian medicine and circulated in handwritten copy by generations of monks through the entire monastic network. The abbot who took on this prodigy was made Pope as a result. Check out Constantine Africanus. Lay people outside of the monastic network eventually came by copies, especially after Guttenburg's printing press enabled wider circulation and after a couple of centuries enough research had been done in Europe to warrant a back translation into Arabic. After that, there were enough dual-language speakers to keep the learnings growing on their own, and knowledge which was initially taught only through European monasteries (and the first universities were built to train priests) became taught through other avenues. Why? Because the improvements in medicine enabled people to live longer - and to pay for better treatment. The monks were dedicated to their primary task and they were not numerous enough to meet the demands of a growing population, so medical science departed the church and was (apart from those hospitals and institutions which are still church funded) effectively delegated to specialists.
In general terms? In general terms it would mean an inability to see. It isnt possible not to read too much into the question. One who lacks visible sight is unlikely to deny blindness. The other way to interpret the question is one who lacks insight or is ignorant. I am saying curing the latter is only worth the effort if you believe you have greater insight and are more enlightened, you believe it is somehow your job to fix these things, and you some how feel the necessity to help someone who does not want your help. I do not think there is a point in trying to enlighten those who would prefer to remain ignorant. It reminds me of the Christians who try to bring 'the truth' to others. No one is asking them to bring the truth. And the worst part of it is, they agree that those who are completely ignorant will not end up in hell, because it is not their fault. But then they go around preaching, risking people's souls to damnation. Because people who have heard and choose not to believe will end up in hell. Is it not better to leave them alone then?
First you ask yourself what makes you an authority on diagnosing blindness. And then you ask yourself what exactly the cure is (surely a 'cure' is subjective). And then you ask yourself why it is so important to try to 'cure' this person (after all if a person has not asked for help, unless they are doing serious damage to themselves or others why try). If after all that you still want to try a 'cure', I suppose all you can do is talk to the person. Confrontation rarely leads to a reduction of denial. So you have a discussion with them from their point of view. And then you try the socratic method of questioning (basically asking a question with a set answer in mind). Sometimes this leading type of questioning can plant at least a seed of doubt in someone's denial. But it takes time. And effort to do all this. And I would really wonder why anyone would bother.
I am sorry, I really have no idea what your point is. I really was simply providing an example. The same could be said of anything. Blindness when it comes to disagreements of political ideology. Christians who think they know best was just an easy example. I find all people who think they have all the answers to be as deluded. As for faith. There are times when doctors get things wrong. People survive despite the doctor's information. To believe you have all the answers in any situation is the height of arrogance and delusion. Again, I have no idea what your point you're trying to make. Or what it has to do with the question.
Good points - in many countries, anyone can declare themselves an authority on anything not regulated by law, and set up their own institution. Their DEGREE or power of authority varies according to the number of people in agreement, and rises if that number becomes a significant majority. What would you consider - in general terms - 'blind' to mean, and what would constitute a cure for it? Are you saying that curing blindness is not worth the effort? Try not to read too much into the question and have a go...
I guess you are not talking about a person who _can't_ see, but about a person who _could_ but who does not want to see.
Or rather about a person who sees the same thing you see. But interprets a different meaning into it.
Ask yourself what makes you believe that you are right and they are wrong. Ask yourself what makes them believe that they are right and you are wrong.
Maybe that will enable you to help.
My bad! Metaphors sometimes have so many layers that they can become cloudy. I was trying to help you understand how people can inevitably come to believe in the supernatural. You have nevertheless helped my thinking a great deal and I thank you for your patience. A small prophesy: later this year, you will re-appraise your life in a way you never thought possible. :) I'll close this topic for now. Keep talking!
The bottom line: the ignorant will read once someone works out the language which will engage their attention, even if it has to be in pictures with music. Even the blind can see word-pictures if they think it's a good idea.
Is it not cruel then, to leave them in darkness in the meantime? Would they be resentful when they found out you could have perhaps done more to help them sooner?
You leave them find out that they're blind the hard way, on their own. Once they really open their eyes, they'll see.
In Frank Herbert's 'Dune' the blind were led into the desert to die, but I was thinking that was a bit extreme!
Go with it. If they dont wanna believe there blind - Then who cares. Letm be.
ignorance is cured with knowledge its stupidity that can't be cured
You don't...you let them live....ignorance can rarely be cured.