In terminology, belief is is a state or habit of mind in which trust or confidence is placed; a conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some thing or phenomenon, especially when based on examination of evidence. [1]

The following are related quotes:

“I’m willing to believe that we are flotsam and jetsam.”
— Jim Peebles (c.1991), response to query about the Steven Weinberg pointless universe model [2]

“The belief state of an obscure lump of molecules wandering around a remote corner of England is of no importance whatsoever epistemologically speaking.”
Barry Barnes (1998), response to David Mermin whether he “might perhaps be into astrology” [3]

“A belief is a lever that, once pulled, moves almost everything else in a person’s life. Are you a scientist? A liberal? A racist? These are merely species of belief in action. Your beliefs define your vision of the world; they dictate your behavior; they determine your emotional responses to other human beings.”
Sam Harris (2004), The End of Faith (pg. 12)

See also
● Belief fixation (see: walking encyclopedia)
Belief system
Belief system (children)

1. Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary, 2000.
2. Weinberg, Steven. (1992). Weinberg, Steven. (1992). Dreams of a Final Theory: the Scientist’s Search for the Ultimate Laws of Nature (pointless, pgs. 255-56). Random House.
3. (a) Barnes, Barry. (1998). “Oversimplification and the Desire for Truth: Response to Mermin” (abs) (pg. 637), Social Studies of Science, 28:636-40.
(b) Barnes, Barry, Bloor, David and Henry, John. (1996). Scientific Knowledge: A Sociological Analysis. University of Chicago Press.
(c) Mermin, N. David. (2001). “Conversing Seriously with Sociologists” (pg. 94), in: The One Culture? A Conversation about Science (editors: Jay Labinger and Harry Collins) (§7:83-98). University of Chicago Press.
(d) David Mermin – Wikipedia.

Further reading
● Girotto, Vittorio, Pievani, Telmo, and Vallortigara, Giorgio. (2014). “Supernatural Beliefs: Adaptations for Social Life or By-Products of Cognitive Adaptations?”, Behavior, 151:385-402.

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