"Mental acceptance or conviction in the truth or actuality of something"(Am.Heritage diet., p. 121,1978)
Beliefs are very significant in individuals and in social systems. It is debatable if "acceptance"is "mental". It seems generally to be rather emotional.
In any case, for an individual, beliefs are a pre-ordering factor of reference frames, wheter rational, esthetic, philosophical or religious. But a rational belief may lead one to question a religious belief, or conversely. Different kinds of beliefs lead naturally to different decision making and behavior.
In any human group, as for example a business, or a political party, common beliefs are the indispensable common ground without which cohesiveness cannot be maintained and coherent behavior be sustained.
This remains true even if these beliefs are implicit and never overtly proclaimed.
Similarly, different cultures are different precisely because the basic beliefs shared by individuals in any specific culture are at variance with the beliefs of other ones.
In any culture, the set of beliefs acts as a general behavioral control, because it compatibilizes and coordinates individual behaviors (in German: Gleichschaltung)
Moreover, its beliefs set endows a culture with a kind of immunity to enchroachments from other cultures. Unfortunately this derives frequently into intolerance and reciprocal hostility between individuals or groups alien to each other.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
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Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
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