A belief is the mental act, condition, or habit of placing trust or confidence in another. It is a substitute for observing for oneself. Since there are many phenomena that we are not able to observe directly, we tend to use the observations of others as a guide to what exists.
One definition of beliefs views them as energy-saving shortcuts in modeling and predicting the environment. (tinyurl.com/rvy9xfax) If we have been using these shortcuts successfully for a long while, we tend to rely on them as if they were actual facts.
When we encounter something that contradicts our beliefs, its very existence can make us wrong and we reject it. We can also reject any activity that might prove the existence of something that will contradict our beliefs,
If we believe, for example, that we are placed here on earth by a heavenly agency and once this life has run its course we will be recalled to another realm, it is very difficult to engage with people who try to tell us that we are spirits who have repeated experiences as a human being. If we encounter a past-life experience through an accident or a therapeutic counseling session, we will do our best to rationalize this as an imaginary occurrence.
On the other hand, if we have been taught that mankind is afflicted with original sin and total depravity, it is hard to grasp the idea that we are immortal beings with powers far beyond the usual human abilities. The idea that we can perceive each other’s thoughts and can predict future events is impossible to grasp.
In some cases, demonstration of abilities beyond the acceptable limits of human behavior will result in the complete rejection of anything you might wish to share. Try healing someone with a touch and see what this does to a person who believes that only doctors can heal and anything else is witchcraft.
Those of you who are aware that there is more to life than your parents and priests told you about, should not slack off from using and sharing your abilities. Just be aware that true believers have been protecting themselves from new ideas for a long time and it will take patience if you wish to enlighten them. If your offers of help frighten them, do not persist. Work with those who appreciate your help and benefit from it. Do not waste your help on others as they will say your help is harmful.