inflicting beliefs?

in ragamuffin’s most recent blog entry, there is talk about the writer, steve, inflicting beliefs on someone, concerning his post on “top 10 reasons why men shouldn’t be ordained“.

what interests me – what does it mean to “inflict” a belief on someone? it conjures up an image of capture and wounding. i’m thinking of the windows of the scientology church into which i used to be able to see clearely from my office window in toronto, many years ago. i could see two or three people literally ganging up on a person, physically cornering that person and talking to/at them (i was told later on that that is a somewhat typical practice).

that is what i call inflicting beliefs. if indeed it is possible to inflict a belief on anyone.

if you don’t do that, what is the mechanism of inflicting? how easy is it to inflict a belief? a belief, after all, is something that is personally held. by definition, it’s not necessarily something that anyone else shares.

a belief is

“an acceptance that an idea is true” (according to here)

okay, so if it’s an acceptance – how can i inflict my acceptance on someone else? i mean, how does that work? i can try to force someone to also accept it (= ram it down their throats, literally – what comes to mind is one of the episodes of startrek TNG) but how can i make them accept my acceptance? at best, i can try to make them believe that i truly believe something.

trying to inflict a belief on someone seems a bit like trying to make someone else sense their sensations or think their thoughts. that’s just not possible. what i sense and think is, in its essence, not communicable to anyone. we can talk about these sensations and thoughts, we can describe them, but we cannot transmit them.

what do you think?

isabella mori
counselling in vancouver

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