The Values of Skepticism

Topics: Scientific method, Authority, Person Pages: 3 (1094 words) Published: March 25, 2013
The values of skepticism
The attitude of skepticism isn’t about not believing; it’s about suspending judgment until a claim can be verified with evidence and explanation. In most cases people tend to be easily tricked in believing what the majority of people believe in, just because of that simple fact. As intellectual individuals, humans have the ability to distinguish what seems to be good, and what seems to be not good and inconvenient simply by means of sight, taste, smell, touch but assumptions without out any sort of support only leads people to become ignorant, confused, and perhaps end up hurting oneself or other people emotionally. Practicing skepticism is crucial to protecting oneself from believing unsubstantiated claims, it also allows people to discover the truth about their assumptions, and become more knowledgeable by using their own reasoning. Therefore individuals should adopt a more skeptical outlook to their everyday lives.

A reason for there to be ideas efficiently transmitted to people, is that they are presented in a finished form. However, ideas are plentiful and human brain can only deal with a small number of them, and individuals usually tend to show a practical interest in adopting only the best idea. Sometimes people choose ideas based on their cultural beliefs such as respect to an authority figure, tradition, religion, commonsense, spirituality, prejudices, etc. The virtue of skepticism attempts to apply rationality to thoroughly get to the bottom of ideas with the great intention to seek for reliable knowledge. While thinking about the prompt of this essay I realized that people do this everyday, sometimes people question authority and ideas presented by other individuals. How do we know when it is appropriate to do so? Main leading thinkers and philosophers of the Enlightenment and the Scientific Revolution were highly sophisticated skeptics, and whether it was provoked by their own curiosity or their own knowledge they...
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