Yes, people do appear to choose their beliefs about how the world works at least partially for the sake of self-identity or various such social or psychological reasons. However, when we assert that an entity x exists, or an event y happened, we are actually making a factual claim about how the world works, we are saying x really exists in our best judgement. The only way to properly justify such beliefs is on a best overall (inferred) fit with the available empirical evidences. Anyone who allows any other considerations to play a role in their reaching such conclusions about how the universe works is either making an epistemological mistake, or is knowingly being dishonest with themself and/or with others.
On Aug 9, 2013, at 2:10 PM, Brian L <[address removed]> wrote:
> Socially, many seem to choose an identity label stating that they are well-meaning