Concept of a Manifest Deity
People often ask me if I believe in the Goddess. I reply, “Do you believe in rocks?” It is extremely difficult for most Westerners to grasp the concept of a manifest deity. The phrase “believe in” itself implies that we cannot know the Goddess, that She is somehow intangible, incomprehensible. But we do not believe in rocks—we may see them, touch them, dig them out of our gardens, or stop small children from throwing them at each other. We know them; we connect with them….
— Starhawk, The Spiral Dance, Chapter 5
Manifest deities are not just a staple in role-playing games; they are usually the default cosmology. Characters do not have belief or unbelief in deities, but rather trust or lack trust in them.