(Still an important topic, I’ve updated this post.)
Belief is mutually exclusive with Knowledge.
Belief is accepting something as true when you have no evidence.
Knowledge is accepting something as true when you do have evidence and a means to prove it.
Belief is emotion based and tends to resist evidence to the contrary.
Knowledge is thought based and tends to update as new evidence is found.
Belief is the basis of religion, Knowledge is the basis of science. To cross the two, as people do when they say “the science is settled” about something that clearly isn’t settled, is disaster and is not how science really works. For the record very little in science is ever “settled.” That’s the point of science. True scientists create a theory, test it, change their theory when the facts don’t support it, and try to repeat their results. False scientists create results to fit their theory, or alter them when they don’t come out “right.”
Here is a great quote regarding belief that truly made me think and I hope it does the same for you, dear Reader:
“Belief is a virus, and once it gets into you, its first order of business is to preserve itself,and the way it preserves itself is to keep you from having any doubts,and the way it keeps you from doubting is to blind you to the way things really are.” – Philip Caputo
What is more, I have found that Belief and Knowledge are mutually exclusive. Having a desire to understand the world in all it’s awe inspiring beauty, I’ve made it a personal mission to eliminate belief. It’s a long process, and a little disturbing how many ways belief is inserted into society as well as my own upbringing, but it’s been worth it so far. Embracing a knowledge based mindset has given me a firmer grounding in my world, better understanding of how things work, and a deep, abiding joy in existence. Belief had left me with a shaky foundation and a great deal of uncertainty.
Faith and belief lead to uncertainty for me. Knowledge and understanding lead to trust.
A customer service training I went to once said “take all hope away from your customer.” The statement was meant to shock the student, then get them to think, because the follow up was “they shouldn’t have to hope you will do your job well, they should know you will.”
I’ve taken that to heart, and find it interesting food for thought.
I also wish to add a link to this visual article. I found it thought provoking, entertaining, and a little touching.