What a person believes is based upon many things. It is a combination of the experiences a person has had from conception and the conditioning people have had from parents, siblings, teachers and anything or anyone else along the way. And then at a certain point one has to ask the question: "Is this person self aware which many people are not?" You might ask, "What does self aware mean?"
I would say that self aware is when a person no longer looks to others for "Belief support". So, it would be the point at which (this never happens to some people by the way) people don't turn to anyone to make the decision of what is real. They might only turn to nature and God for the truth at that point.
So, when someone is completely making decisions from their own experiences they are having with the universe in any given moment. And even if someone is "Self Aware" there are going to be variations of this.
For example, if you are in the military to be efficient most of the time you cannot be self aware and be a part of the military regime and efficient in battle. (Of course there are always exceptions to this)
Another example that is similar "You cannot be self aware while learning to be a monk or a priest or a minister." Because being self aware would make you question what you are doing in those kinds of disciplines.
However, after the training is completed it is possible for people to be in the military or religious orders to be self aware while at the same time obeying the precepts of "non-self awareness". So, in this sense to be a minister, priest, monk or soldier one is living in a potential paradox situation.
Some people can live with this and some can't depending upon the personality of the person. For some people these two types of paradoxes are helpful and for some people they are death to the person depending upon the nature of the person doing either of these types of professions.
To me and the men of my father's lineage being self aware (sort of like the people who settled the U.S. and survived and prospered in the first place) it was always considered to be necessary as an adult to be self aware all the time.
My father's father used to say to my father when he became religious, "Hello, Jesus Christ!" because he didn't respect religious people even though he greatly respected nature and was a hunter like his forebears. I think the Civil War might have killed religion in his family to some degree. Because my great grandfather was a Captain in the Civil War. So, my father was one of the first religious people in his family when he became an adult because he needed God in his life and his two sisters and one of his brothers followed him into a religious way of looking at things too.
However, people say I'm more like my grandfather who saw all nature as sacred and maybe thought more about spirituality like Native Americans did down through history and so less attracted to formal religion and going to church as something really useful to do.
Everyone is different and everyone has different needs and beliefs. And I think as long as people aren't killing each other or themselves while killing others mostly this is okay worldwide.
But, another point I'd like to make. Do religions save more lives than they take? This is another way to look at them too.
In other words I wish there was a way to quantify the good and ill that religions do to mankind like a computer study down through the centuries of deaths caused by religious strife compared to something else.
Part of the problem in any kind of study is looking at nations and most nations down through history were based upon the union of those people in one religion or another. For example, if two competing religions were in the same country there were sure to be wars ongoing throughout history. But, if one nation was majority one religion or religious faction or another (Like the U.S. has been mostly a Christian nation) as long as that was true the nation could do quite well. But, if the nation over time became 50% Christian and 50% something else a war would be certain over time.
In the U.S. We are what is called a Christian Secular nation primarily still. Though there are other religions here from all over the world as long as each of them are less than 10% of the population of the U.S. there will not be major wars here until they reach 20% to 30% of the population.
But then, as more and more people become more secular and less formally Christian this also creates less cohesion in the U.S. as well and more chaotic thoughts and actions.
So, as I write this I'm seeing the increasing complexity to all this demographically. But, I think if someone or some university had the time to actually put all these ideas together and then ran all these facts through a computer simulation one could not only see where we all came from but also where we all would tend to go to as a nation and as a world also.