TNH 1.3.08.06

No-one can doubt that •causation has the same influence as do •resemblance and •contiguity. Superstitious people are fond of the relics of saints and holy men, for the same reason that they want symbols and images, in order to enliven their devotion and give them a stronger and more intimate conception of the exemplary lives they want to imitate. It is clear that one of the best relics a devotee could get would be something made by the saint ·and thus causally related to him·; and if his clothes and furniture are ever considered as especially desirable in the same way, that is because they were once at his disposal and were moved and affected by him, which makes them partial effects of the saint, and connected with him by a shorter chain of consequences than any of the ones from which we learn that he really existed. This phenomenon clearly proves that a present impression with a relation of causation can enliven any idea, and consequently produce belief or assent; which fits my definition of ‘belief’.

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