The following quote from Krishnamurti...from "Commentaries on Living":
"One of the things that most of us eagerly accept and take so totally for granted is the concept of "Belief". I am not attacking beliefs. What we are trying to do is to find out why we accept "belief" and if we can understand the motives, the cause of that acceptance, then perhaps we may be able to understand why we do it, but also be free of it. ...
One can see how political, national, cultural and religious beliefs do separate people, do create conflict, confusion and antagonism -- this is an obvious fact - yet we are unwilling to give them up.
There is the Hindu belief, the Christian belief, the Muslim belief -- innumerable sectarian and various political ideologies, all contending with each other, trying to convert each other. One can see, obviously, that "Belief" is separating people, creating intolerance. Is it possible to just live without belief? One can find that out only if one can study oneself in relation to a 'belief'. Is it possible to live in this world without a belief - not change belief, not substitute one belief for another, yet be entirely free from all belief? So that one meets life anew each minute?
This, after all, is the truth: to have the capacity of meeting everything anew, from moment to moment, without the conditioning-reaction of the past, so that there is not the accumulative effect which acts as a barrier between oneself and that which is. Can you do it?"
Commentaries on Living ~ J. Krishnamurtihttp://sandorian.us/newslog2.php/__show_article/_a000245-000047.htm
This article holds merit in acknowledging that subscribing to different beliefs/ belief systems can contribute to much of the conflict in society. Differences in the beliefs held by various and often opposed ethnic, religious, cultural, political, racial and gender groups have proven to be quite destructive and have helped to sustain systems of racism, sexism, classism and sexuality which are very biased and skewed toward the benefit of hegemonic groups that are aligned with certain beliefs. I do not agree however that the solution to the division that stems from differing beliefs is to discard or to be entirely free of belief.
It is my opinion that human knowledge and action is the result of an accumulation of experiences which condition behavior. While it is true that many beliefs such as those derived from religion are not based on experience but rather faith, over time and space it has been the accumulation of knowledge from past experiences that have informed many of the beliefs held by members of different cultures and societies today that cannot be discarded so to meet "everything anew".
Beliefs are not fixed rather they are flexible and subject to rapid change primarily because of its psychological nature as well as the possibility to unearth facts through research and exploration that will influence systems of thought. For example it was believed, before proper research and investigation that the world was flat. It was believed that women were just abnormal men who longed to possess the phallic symbol of power. It was believed that Africans were sub-human. All of which have come to be discredited with research and reasoning. Instead attempting to discard all belief, I believe that those beliefs that have proven to be divisive and to constrain human agency and freedom such as those rooted in ethnocentrism, essentialism, racism, capitalism/ neo liberalism, heterosexism, religion and sexism should be discarded. This I believe can be done through development of self, introspection, searching for truth, acting on the things we find to be true, setting good examples for life, offering help when sought that can bring others to the threshold of their own knowledge that lies within to invoke conscious thought and action.