“Belief” as an analytical tool and critical category of investigation for the study of religion
has been a resurging topic of interest. This article discusses the problems of language and practice in
the discussion of “belief” and proceeds to map a few of the emergent frameworks, proposed within
the past decade, for investigating “belief”. The issue of inconsistency, however, continues to remain a
perennial issue that has not been adequately explained. This article argues for the utility and value of
the “believing selves” framework, in conjunction with revisionist theories of cognitive dissonance, to
advance the claim that beliefs are representations, as well as functions, of cultural history which bind
individual and society.