Belief

The established religious institutions are bastions of ignorance in a world where knowledge has become the most valuable commodity. Well-entrenched, these institutions hold back social progress, dividing people who otherwise have no reason to oppose one another, fanning the flames of militarism and nationalism. Most of all, however, they are promoting ignorance and falsehoods at the expense of truth. How can society advance under such erroneous belief systems?

During the last century, and part of the one before, it was widely held that there was an irreconcilable conflict between knowledge and belief.

Reason provides a means of escaping from the constraints of belief-systems backed by authority and from the resentment which clever people feel at the power of their own passions. Because reason--in admittedly varying degrees--is available to everybody, it has a potential advantage over the truth you feel and the truth you are told.

Man often becomes what he believes himself to be. If I keep on saying to myself that I cannot do a certain thing, it is possible that I may end by really becoming incapable of doing it. On the contrary, if I shall have the belief that I can do it. I shall surely acquire the capacity to do it, even if I may not have it at the beginning.

Gratitude is the intention to count-your-blessings every day, every minute, while avoiding, whenever possible, the belief that you need or deserve different circumstances.

It is certain that the two World Wars in which I have participated would not have occurred had we been prepared. It is my belief that adequate preparation on our part would have prevented or materially shortened all our other wars beginning with that of 1812. Yet, after each of our wars, there has always been a great hue and cry to the effect that there will be no more wars, that disarmament is the sure road to health, happiness, and peace; and that by removing the fire department, we will remove fires. These ideas spring from wishful thinking and from the erroneous belief that wars result from logical processes. There is no logic in wars. They are produced by madmen. No man can say when future madmen will reappear. I do not say that there will be no more wars; I devoutly hope that there will not, but I do say that the chances of avoiding future wars will be greatly enhanced if we are ready.

I would rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.

The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all of mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all of mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all of mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Unless man is committed to the belief that all mankind are his brothers, then he labors in vain and hypocritically in the vineyards of equality.

Belief is harder to shake than knowledge.

Belief is harder to shake than knowledge.

Every individual is at once the beneficiary and the victim of the linguistic tradition into which he has been born - the beneficiary inasmuch as language gives access to the accumulated records of other people's experience, the victim in so far as it confirms him in the belief that reduced awareness is the only awareness and as it bedevils his sense of reality, so that he is all too apt to take his concepts for data, his words for actual things.

Every individual is at once the beneficiary and the victim of the linguistic tradition into which he has been born - the beneficiary inasmuch as language gives access to the accumulated records of other people's experience, the victim in so far as it confirms him in the belief that reduced awareness is the only awareness and as it bedevils his sense of reality, so that he is all too apt to take his concepts for data, his words for actual things.

Every individual is at once the beneficiary and the victim of the linguistic tradition into which he has been born - the beneficiary inasmuch as language gives access to the accumulated records of other people's experience, the victim in so far as it confirms him in the belief that reduced awareness is the only awareness and as it bedevils his sense of reality, so that he is all too apt to take his concepts for data, his words for actual things.

Faith is belief without evidence, in what is told by one who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.