I'm writing a paper exploring the effects of belief on an individual's perspective/worldview. My intent with the paper is more of a Sociological and philosophical viewpoint; I will explore subjects such as Religion, collective belief, perspectivism, and the manner in which our beliefs both project (through constructs) and shape our world (through our actions). My particular concern here though, is the specific scientific concept that I have included in the included thought experiment: If there has been no observation made as to what is in the box, is it safe to suggest that anything could be in the box, from the perspective of quantum mechanics? I have read on introductory quantum mechanics in the past, and I am interested in the affect that belief has on quantum mechanics, but I am uncertain as to how thoroughly I understand the topic. Essentially, I would like to know if belief (specifically the collective belief of an entire population) can be considered an observation, and would it affect the probability of a specific outcome occurring? Please give me feed back, as I would like to include it, but only if it is in fact grounded in extant theory. Any insight from any discipline is welcome. (It may need some editing; at the moment I'm worried about the content) "The world is plagued by problems. As it slips deeper and deeper into despair, it searches desperately for solutions, but finds none. The desperation is great. Then one day, hope literally appears on humanity’s doorstep: There, sitting in the middle of Times Square, is a large box. No one knows where it came from. No person in the world has ever seen the box before. As media coverage of the box rises, curiosity mounts. The focus of the human population shifts from the hardships of everyday life, and the box is marvelled over. Questions are asked, reworded, and repeated continuously. What’s in the box? Who put the box there? As plans are made to open the box, a scientist steps forward with what is both a dire warning, and an extraordinary hope for humanity. The scientist warns that the box must not be opened, for the contents of the box are truly unknown; no person in the world has ever observed them. Anything can be in the box, but if the box is opened, then the contents will be revealed. The box may contain humanity’s only hope for survival. But it may also contain a powerful evil, or may even contain nothing at all. For as long as the box remains sealed, hope survives. The scientist warns that there must be no attempt to discern what’s in the box: Its weight must not be calculated, its dimensions must not be not be measured. Any attempt to do so would beget the contents, and hope may be lost. The government, desperate to resolve the world’s disparity, heeds the call, and the box is covered, so it may not be measured. The world buzzes with speculation and rumour. If no one put it there, where did it come from? Does the box contain humanity’s greatest salvation, or does it contain the obliteration of all they know? What’s in the box, and how can they know? The box, a variant of the box that held Schrödinger’s cat, epitomizes all possibility. Until the contents of the box have been observed, the contents of the box can be anything— the poignancy of the box is not that the box contains humanity’s greatest hope, but that it may. And so the true power of belief lies in what may have happened after the scientist came forward. Suppose that the entirety of the world came to believe that the contents of the box did in fact contain their greatest hope. Would it? Now suppose the rumor spread that everyone was wrong, and that the box contained explosive atomic energy, of majestic proportions. What would the box actually contain? Is there even anything in the box? And does it matter, since the box can’t be opened? Here, one can only speculate, and we will never know. Quantum theory says that since the contents have not been observed, the box is empty, and so it contains only chance: There is a chance that upon opening the box, the world’s problems will be solved; there is a chance that Pandora’s spirits of evil will pour out, and malevolence will be wrought. But what if the entire world truly believed that hope was contained within the box? Could their beliefs affect chance? Could they determine the contents of the box? And more broadly, does belief determine existence?"