“You have learnt something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something.”
— George Bernard Shaw
Belief in progress doesn't mean belief in progress that has already occurred. That would not require belief.
A man cannot live without a steady faith in something indestructible within him, though both the faith and the indestructible thing may remain permanently concealed from him. One of the forms o this concealment is the belief in a personal god.
— Franz Kafka, The Zurau Aphorisms