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Belief, philosophy: attitude of considering a sentence to be true. Unlike religious faith belief is linked to the assessment of probabilities. A belief is an attitude of a thinking person which can usually be formulated in a sentence, whereby the person must be able to integrate the sentence into a set of further sentences. A further condition is that the bearer of beliefs is able to reformulate the corresponding sentences and negate them, that is, to grasp their meaning. See also religious belief, propositional attitudes, intensions, probability, belief degrees, private language.
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Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

 
Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

W.V.O. Quine on Beliefs - Dictionary of Arguments

I 365
Beliefs and quotes can be understood as all sorts of different things (vagueness).
I 372
Paul and Elmer: belief does not produce sentences like legends. The following cannot be decided: that Paul believes true and Elmer does not. If the truth value does not matter, believing is no relative term. W believes x is no predicate - w believes p: p is not a term. >Truth Value/Quine
.
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VII (h) 142
Belief/Quine: there is no relation. Belief is related to the false sentence. Instead Church argues that belief and knowledge just resemble quotes - (>Opaque contexts, >Opacity).
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XII 34
Belief/Quine: E.g. Thomas believes that Tullius wrote the Ars Magna - in fact, he confuses Tullius with Lullus. There are two options: a) Tom does not believe that Cicero (Tullius) wrote the Ars Magna, he just confuses the names, i.e. he knows who wrote the Ars Magna - here Tullius does not purely appear in a referential way. b) He believes something wrong: then Tullius is purely indicative.
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Stroud I 228
Belief/Knowledge/Quine: knowledge is not part of belief - nothing we believe about the external world is knowledge. >Knowledge/Quine.
Brandom I 790/791
Relational Belief/Quine: relational belief brings along a special epistemic access to or contact with objects and de re-attributions which include existence stipulations.
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Quine I 146
To the same extent that radical translation is underdetermined by the totality of dispositions to linguistic behavior, our theories and beleifs are underdetermined forever and ever.
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II 55
Stimulus/Quine: a stimulus does not make statements true, but leads to documented beliefs.
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IV 413
Quine Two Dogmas: Thesis: "The totality of our so-called knowledge and/or our beliefs - from the most incidental things of geography to the most fundamental laws even of mathematics and logic - is a material knitted by humans, which meets experience only at its edges. The totality of science is like a force field whose boundary conditions are experiences."
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VI 20
Change/Theory Change/Quine: If we change our beliefs, many sentences must be spared, also because they are simply irrelevant!
But if we reject beliefs, we have to track down all sentences that contain them. "Maxime of Minimal Mutilation".
VI 92
Belief/Quine: Example "x believes that p" is itself a permanent sentence, because a belief is a state.
VI 94
Belief/Quine: can always be common to a plurality of subjects. Moreover, perceptions are always perceived veritatively, beliefs are not perceived this way. ((s) One cannot perceive something wrong.)
VI 100
Perception/Belief/Quine: Every perception is in principle completely describable using strictly neurological terms. However, this does not apply to beliefs. >Perception/Quine.
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XIII 18
Belief/Quine: believing is thinking in a certain limited sense. To believe something is to think it. "Think like this" and "believe like this" are interchangeable and also "think that" and "believe that".
But they differ elsewhere.
Thinking/Quine: for example we can think intensely, but we cannot believe intensely. For example we can believe something, but not think something. Grammar forbids this.
Belief/Thinking/Action/Disposition/Quine: Belief is a disposition - thinking is an activity. Thinking can make us tired, belief cannot.
XIII 19
We also do not sit there and believe something. Only the White Queen from Alice in Wonderland does that: before breakfast she believes 6 impossible things.
Wrong: e.g. a young man in love believes what his lover believes - Example William James' "Will to believe": Example Pascal's bet, Example Tertullian: credo quia absurdum: these are distortions of the concept of belief.
Belief/Disposition/Quine: what then is the believer disposed for? A good test is to ask someone to use money for what he/she is pleading for.
XIII 20
Problem: this is only possible with decidable questions, not with the question whether beauty is truth.
Beauty/Truth/Belief/Keats/Quine: one also wonders whether Keats really believed that. Maybe he just wanted to create a bit of beauty himself, like e.g. Morning Star: "just for the rhyme". >Beauty/Quine.
Belief/Quine: belief comes mostly in bundles of dispositions. It is remarkable that this can lead to such different actions as, for example, booking a cruise, or tidying up the room.
Thesis: these extremely different mental states (mental state, internal state) have nothing in common.
XIII 21
The only thing in common is linguistically: the "that". ((s) > propositional attitudes).
Problem: the constant form of "x believes that p" lets us assume that the rest of the sentence is also in order. But this changes from case to case, so that it is difficult to draw a line here.
Belief/Paradox/Quine: to believe something is to believe that it is true. So a person believes that all his/her beliefs are true. But experience shows that some beliefs are wrong, as this person knows very well.
Problem: So a rational person believes that every one of his/her beliefs are true and yet some are false. I would have expected something better from rational people.

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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Quine I
W.V.O. Quine
Word and Object, Cambridge/MA 1960
German Edition:
Wort und Gegenstand Stuttgart 1980

Quine II
W.V.O. Quine
Theories and Things, Cambridge/MA 1986
German Edition:
Theorien und Dinge Frankfurt 1985

Quine III
W.V.O. Quine
Methods of Logic, 4th edition Cambridge/MA 1982
German Edition:
Grundzüge der Logik Frankfurt 1978

Quine V
W.V.O. Quine
The Roots of Reference, La Salle/Illinois 1974
German Edition:
Die Wurzeln der Referenz Frankfurt 1989

Quine VI
W.V.O. Quine
Pursuit of Truth, Cambridge/MA 1992
German Edition:
Unterwegs zur Wahrheit Paderborn 1995

Quine VII
W.V.O. Quine
From a logical point of view Cambridge, Mass. 1953

Quine VII (a)
W. V. A. Quine
On what there is
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (b)
W. V. A. Quine
Two dogmas of empiricism
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (c)
W. V. A. Quine
The problem of meaning in linguistics
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (d)
W. V. A. Quine
Identity, ostension and hypostasis
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (e)
W. V. A. Quine
New foundations for mathematical logic
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (f)
W. V. A. Quine
Logic and the reification of universals
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (g)
W. V. A. Quine
Notes on the theory of reference
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (h)
W. V. A. Quine
Reference and modality
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VII (i)
W. V. A. Quine
Meaning and existential inference
In
From a Logical Point of View, , Cambridge, MA 1953

Quine VIII
W.V.O. Quine
Designation and Existence, in: The Journal of Philosophy 36 (1939)
German Edition:
Bezeichnung und Referenz
In
Zur Philosophie der idealen Sprache, J. Sinnreich (Hg), München 1982

Quine IX
W.V.O. Quine
Set Theory and its Logic, Cambridge/MA 1963
German Edition:
Mengenlehre und ihre Logik Wiesbaden 1967

Quine X
W.V.O. Quine
The Philosophy of Logic, Cambridge/MA 1970, 1986
German Edition:
Philosophie der Logik Bamberg 2005

Quine XII
W.V.O. Quine
Ontological Relativity and Other Essays, New York 1969
German Edition:
Ontologische Relativität Frankfurt 2003

Quine XIII
Willard Van Orman Quine
Quiddities Cambridge/London 1987

Stroud I
B. Stroud
The Significance of philosophical scepticism Oxford 1984

Bra I
R. Brandom
Making it exlicit. Reasoning, Representing, and Discursive Commitment, Cambridge/MA 1994
German Edition:
Expressive Vernunft Frankfurt 2000

Bra II
R. Brandom
Articulating reasons. An Introduction to Inferentialism, Cambridge/MA 2001
German Edition:
Begründen und Begreifen Frankfurt 2001

Quine XIII
Willard Van Orman Quine
Quiddities Cambridge/London 1987


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