Sadly, it reaped such undistinguished reviews that, on my recent trip to Las Vegas, I was dissuaded from seeing Cirque du Soleil's much-touted production at the splendid Luxor featuring magician Criss Angel; though as scant consolation to Mr. Angel, I did much admire his ubiquitous publicity posters. What I found particularly cute, other than the decidedly fine-looking masked wench, is the typographic word play within BeLieve betraying, as it does, the metasignificance of the notion of belief.
People, and naturally I include myself within that grouping, all have complex belief systems regarding ourselves and the world around us, and this worldview tends to become pretty entrenched from adolescence onwards. Consistency and continuity of beliefs have been argued as a measure of a person's sanity - note for example how the accusation of flip-flopping, often levelled at politicians, is so hard to counter (is it really so wrong to change one's mind, or admit fault?). Thus, in addition to also forming an integral part of the illusion of identity, there's powerful social pressure to maintain and reinforce these beliefs whatever their configuration, rigidly and absolutely, much of which takes the form of ritual and ritualised behaviour.
I see belief as essentially superstition, something I already touched upon in a previous entry in this series (apologies for some repetition here) - and I mean superstition in the sense of being neither useful nor helpful. Upon hearing myself or others using expressions such as 'I (don't) think' and 'I believe' and so on, alarm bells inform me that a superstition is about to be communicated. Of course, it should also be said that many utterances may not utilise this languaging at all yet still contain the implicit notion of belief within.
To me, a person's attractiveness and likeability can be measured by their degree of unattachment to their own beliefs: the less attached, the more attractive, and vice versa. Personally, I don't believe in beliefs, especially my own - yes, I have all sorts of preposterous opinions and things to say about all sorts of things, yet I don't claim them to be true, nor do I seek anyone's agreement nor approval, nor disagreement nor disapproval. And I say that to remove the burden from you of that responsibility. My words merely function as a flimsy disposable rope-bridge leading to a domain where any thing is possible and permitted - they have no more meaningful purpose than that.