Beliefs can be said to be a proposition an individual knows as the truth, they come from personal experiences such as cultural societal and religious encounters and once a person accepts a belief as to the truth they are willing to defend it can be said to form a part of their belief system. Beliefs revolve entirely around what you value and do on a day to day basis, they form a general representation of everything going on around you and are very essential for every action we take, it can be as simple as waking up and making your bed, and having your bath. Every individual has their belief system, and we have to ensure that we don’t enforce our personal beliefs on other people by keeping our values in check this will help us determine our reactions to other people’s beliefs.
The real question is how much harm the beliefs might ultimately cause, either directly or indirectly. Beliefs can cause harm directly by promoting or justifying harm towards others. Beliefs can cause harm indirectly by promoting false representations of the world as knowledge while preventing believers from subjecting those representations to critical, skeptical scrutiny.
Unexamined beliefs have been unconsciously shared as ideas that may have developed from messages you were given directly or indirectly intentionally or unintentionally from your family friends the church, the media and others. sometimes they are cultural norms which we deem appropriate so it never occurs to you to question them. This has hindered soo many of us from thinking outside the box and unfortunately, most people find it hard to accept change and see that things can be done differently. Concerning unexamined beliefs and social work, we have policies and practices that are meant to guide us this means that social workers are expected to care about and to be committed to their work while following the codes of practice and not allowing personal beliefs come in between their actions towards the people they care for.
A typical example of how unexamined beliefs can get on the way of social work practice can be seen in a religious setting where the social worker while doing their duty has been groomed to see abortion as a grievous sin and meets this type of conviction where they are deeply conflicted with personal morals as they have been groomed to see abortion as being morally wrong, but your job requires you to advise the client about safe abortion without you getting your personal beliefs into their choice. But as far as this unexamined values go, the codes of practice ensures we make a conscious effort to keep our reactions to issue like this in check.
- Cline, Austin. ‘What Does it Mean to Say ‘I Believe’ Something Is True?’ Learn Religions, Aug. 27, 2020, learnreligions.com/what-is-belief-249805.
- Banks, S. (2012) Ethics and Values in Social Work, 4th edn. Basingtoke: Palgrave.
- Parrott, L. (2014) Values and Ethics in Social Work Practice, 3rd edn. London: Learning Matters.