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> I was drawing a parallel between the computer
> instruction "STORE" and the command "believe".
> You can tell a computer "this field is

I had assumed this was your meaning. Also true of any other system
of storage which is neither self aware nor able to objectively weigh
the factualness of data.

> To command a person to believe, on the other
> hand, is to commit a categorical error of the
> kind Kant warned against.  It is to insult
> the person by treating them as if they are
> a machine (to wit, a computer).

Perhaps, but I doubt that anyone seriously issuing such a command is
aware of this implication. The Hawaiian examples implying "rely" are
interesting, but I question their universality. There's an archaic
English usage in which "believe" implies "judge" e.g. "I believe
meanly of John".

I'm more of a mind that when someone commandingly says "Believe!",
while implying "take as true", more often is commanding the person
(s) to act in ways that imply they believe.

> I did not introduce the word "faith" into
> the discussion.  AFAIK you did.

Mea culpa. I may have opened this door by my example of choosing to
believe in reincarnation.

> Modern psychotherapists often counsel
> patients to believe something other than
> what they now believe, as if it were possible
> to simply change one's mind.

As someone undergoing psychotherapy for depression and social
anxiety, I don't believe any serious therapist holds this idea to be
simple. I'm not a therapist, and I hope that beliefs can be changed,
but I'm skeptical until I experience it.

> One responder has shown that Hawaiian words
> translating "believe" have somewhat different
> connotations than English "believe", more like
> "rely on".  Can you think of other languages
> that might make a difference?

I was recently perusing some older texts on Algonquin - Cree and
Mi'qmau - and ran across usages of "see" and "say" to express belief
& thought: "I say I know the answer.", "I see he is good".
I know neither language well enough to attest to how factual this
is.