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Offlineexclusive58
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Skepticism is self-destructive
    #4153110 - 05/09/05 01:17 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Skepticism is a philosophy that was originally thought out by an Ancient Greek called Pyrrhon, and it is essentially about refusing all dogmas and suspending one's judgements. With skepticism, doubt becomes an end in itself. It also has a reputation of perceiving Truth a something unattainable.

But pushed to the limit, skepticism is contradictory.

If everything is to be doubted, then I have to doubt that I am doubting.
I can't even affirm that everything is doubtful, because if it is, then it is doubtful that everything is doubtful.

This attitude autodestructs itself. Skepticism is a vicious circle that one gets lost into.


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OfflineDoom
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4153123 - 05/09/05 01:22 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

yes if one thinks in absolutes than anything can be deconstructed accordingly and judged as self-deifying


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OfflineOldWoodSpecter
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4153129 - 05/09/05 01:24 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Skepticism can work together with taking risks, so
while you do know that you can't be sure that the road continues in front of you just because you see it with eyes, you take a risk and drive where your eyes tell you to


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I descend upon your earth from the skies
I command your very souls you unbelievers
Bring before me what is mine


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InvisibleDiploidM
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4153137 - 05/09/05 01:26 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Skepticism is at the foundation of epistemology. The default condition when considering the potential existence of a thing should be lack of belief pending the discovery of evidence that such a thing exists. This is different than dis-belief.

I have a lack of belief in the Tooth Fairy. This is not to say that I believe the Tooth Fairy doesn't exist, only that we've never been introduced and until we are, I hold suspect any claim that she exists.

This is skepticism.


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Republican Values:

1) You can't get married to your spouse who is the same sex as you.
2) You can't have an abortion no matter how much you don't want a child.
3) You can't have a certain plant in your possession or you'll get locked up with a rapist and a murderer.

4) We need a smaller, less-intrusive government.


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InvisibleAutonomous
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Diploid]
    #4153425 - 05/09/05 03:01 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Thank you for the succinct yet excellent explanation.


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"In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination."
-- Mark Twain


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Offlineexclusive58
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Diploid]
    #4153486 - 05/09/05 03:26 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Yes, that's the description of people that like to call themselves skeptics. But its not pure skepticism.

The essence of skepticism is to doubt everything, wether there is proof of it or not. The true skeptic would not even acknowledge that the Earth is not at the center of the universe, nor would he say that it is.

Its called the skeptic doubt.


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Invisibleniteowl
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Diploid]
    #4153525 - 05/09/05 03:45 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

Quote:

Diploid said:
I have a lack of belief in the Tooth Fairy. This is not to say that I believe the Tooth Fairy doesn't exist, only that we've never been introduced and until we are, I hold suspect any claim that she exists.





Then you truly are a fool.

Your mother was/is your Tooth Fairy. My mother was mine.

The Tooth Fairy is real. Just not a singular entity.

Same with Santa.


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Offlineemptywisdom
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: niteowl]
    #4153639 - 05/09/05 04:20 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

skepticism is a valuable tool, but relying on it too much is an easy way to cut yourself off from so many aspects of life and our world that are not easily perceived or believed. It's important to know when to let skepticism guide you, and how to use it as a tool. After all, there is plenty of bullshit out there. It's also important to not get wrapped up in skepticism and let it blind you and/or cut you off from things. As with anything, balance is key here.


btw. The tooth fairy and Santa are real. The may not be a physical entity you can see or touch, but if you don't think the presence of Santa, the tooth fairy, and other fantasy characters has a major impact on the world, well, your fooling yourself, and letting skepticism blind you. :wink: This impact does more than enough to make them real. Like the above person said, just not as a singular entity.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4153674 - 05/09/05 04:32 PM (12 years, 16 days ago)

The essence of skepticism is to doubt everything, wether there is proof of it or not. The true skeptic would not even acknowledge that the Earth is not at the center of the universe, nor would he say that it is.

Who decided what a true skeptic is... you?


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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InvisiblePsychoactive1984
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4154502 - 05/09/05 08:09 PM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Pure skepticism? Skepticism is far from absolution.... it's a counter doctrine from purity in way of assertion of absolution more so then it is a supporting mechanism of it.


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"Their is one overriding question that concerns us all: How can we get out of the fatal groove we are in, the one that is leading towards the brink?" Albert Szent-Gyorgyi
"We may not be capable of eradicating the corruption of reason, but we must nevertheless counter it at every instance and with every means." Dan Agin
"Politics is the best religion and politicians are the worst followers."
-It's ok to trip as long as you don't fall.
-Substance over Style.
-Common sense is uncommon.


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Invisibleshroomydan
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Phluck]
    #4154998 - 05/09/05 10:42 PM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Phluck said:
Quote:

Who decided what a true skeptic is... you?




exclusive58 said:
Quote:

Skepticism is a philosophy that was originally thought out by an Ancient Greek called Pyrrhon




From the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

Pyrrho was a Greek philosopher from Elis, and founder of the Greek school of skepticism. In his youth he practiced the art of painting, but passed over this for philosophy. He studied the writings of Democritus, became a disciple of Bryson, the son of Stilpo, and later a disciple of Anaxarchus. He took part in the Indian expedition of Alexander the Great, and met with philosophers of the Indus region. Back in Greece he was frustrated with the assertions of the Dogmatists (those who claimed to possess knowledge), and founded a new school in which he taught that every object of human knowledge involves uncertainty. Thus, he argued, it is impossible ever to arrive at the knowledge of truth (Diog. Laert, 58).
http://www.iep.utm.edu/p/pyrrho.htm

exclusive58 did not decide what skepticism is; he read about it and learned what it was.

Skepticism as philosophy is self-destructive. Philosophy means "Love of Wisdom". The skeptic does not seek truth; he seeks freedom from truth so that he can justify his actions and be free from worry. Ignorance is bliss.

The wise man however knows that to be truly free one must embrace reality as it really is.

The assertion that truth cannot be known is not true. If one claims it to be true he has violated the principle of non-contradiction; he has contradicted his one assertion.

Skepticism however is not a search for the truth, hence it is really not philosophy.


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InvisibleAutonomous
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: shroomydan]
    #4155018 - 05/09/05 10:48 PM (12 years, 15 days ago)

When we discuss the meaning of terms it is sometimes instructive to understand where they originated. However, meanings can change over time and those who compile dictionaries understand this so their definitions are meant to convey the most widely used meanings of the words.
Try this link.


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"In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination."
-- Mark Twain


Edited by Autonomous (05/09/05 10:55 PM)


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InvisibleRavus
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4155024 - 05/09/05 10:50 PM (12 years, 15 days ago)

And what is the alternative? If you are refuting skepticism in an aspect, then it means you are accepting something without proper evidence, in which case you are deluding yourself and ignoring the subjective search for truth.

Taken to its end, we can use skepticism to say we are uncertain on existence itself, but I don't see a problem with this. I would rather be uncertain in the seas of life than to sail right at the rocks while proclaiming I'm sure this is the way.


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So long as you are praised think only that you are not yet on your own path but on that of another.


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Offlineexclusive58
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Ravus]
    #4156044 - 05/10/05 03:38 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Quote:

Ravus said:
And what is the alternative? If you are refuting skepticism in an aspect, then it means you are accepting something without proper evidence, in which case you are deluding yourself and ignoring the subjective search for truth.





Well, the alternative is to use Descartes's methodical doubt, and in this case doubt doesn't become an end in itself, it becomes a mean to find something true, something which is undoubtable.

And this is how Descartes (accidentally) came up with his cogito I think, therefore I am. See, at one point on his search to truth, when he assumed everything to be uncertain to see if there wasn't one thing that stuck out as being undoubtable, he realized through his ability to doubt that he couldn't doubt that he was doubting.

And this truth of one's existence is so sure that even the most extravagant skeptical suppositions are not capable of shaking and unsettling it. This truth is like the Ground to all other truths. Real math, chemistry physics etc, did not truely exist until Descartes's methodical doubt, because before his time, things weren't mathematically expressed and the researchers were influenced by their dogmas.


Quote:

Taken to its end, we can use skepticism to say we are uncertain on existence itself, but I don't see a problem with this.




Descartes saw a problem with this, and he logically refuted skepticism with his cogito. If you admit his cogito to be true, which is impossible to do otherwise, then you also have to say goodbye to skepticism, and by skepticism, i'm not talking about "the most widely used meaning of the word", i'm talking about true skepticism, i.e. how it was originally founded to be (see Shroomydan's post).


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Autonomous]
    #4156700 - 05/10/05 10:55 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Exactly. Simply because the origins of the term were a certain way does not make them "pure" or more refined than any variation on the idea. "Pure" skeptics need not adhere to the original definition any more than "pure" doctors need to rely on spells and incantations.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4156797 - 05/10/05 11:22 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Interesting ideas... how is pure skepticism any different than pure faith? (I use the word pure as in absolute to the extreme)


--------------------
Just another spore in the wind.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: exclusive58]
    #4156800 - 05/10/05 11:24 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

And this is how Descartes (accidentally) came up with his cogito I think, therefore I am.

Ehhh... he doesn't exactly say "I think therefore I am". He says:

Quote:

I have convinced myself that there is absolutely nothing in the world, no sky, no earth, no minds, no bodies. Does it not follow that I too do not exist? No: if I convinced myself of something then I certainly existed. But [suppose] there is a deceiver of supreme power and cunning who is deliberately and constantly deceiving me. In that case too I undoubtedly exist, if he is deceiving me; and let him deceive me as much as he can, he will never bring it about that I am nothing so long as I think that I am something. So after considering everything very thoroughly, I must finally conclude that this proposition, I am, I exist, is necessarily true whenever it is put forward by me or conceived in my mind.




It's more "I think I am, therefore I am".

Descartes saw a problem with this, and he logically refuted skepticism with his cogito. If you admit his cogito to be true, which is impossible to do otherwise, then you also have to say goodbye to skepticism, and by skepticism, i'm not talking about "the most widely used meaning of the word", i'm talking about true skepticism, i.e. how it was originally founded to be (see Shroomydan's post).

His cogito merely proves he exists, but it hardly establishes any certain information. Without knowing WHAT existance is, its certainty is fairly useless. The cogito demonstrates that a very abstract and likely impossible to comprehend concept is certain, however, if NOTHING about the nature of this concept is certain, then there is no certainty.

Anyways, I don't think Pyrrus called it "skepticism". This was a term invented AFTER other forms of skepticism had originated. So it's stupid to argue that since this is the earliest form of skepticism, it MUST be "real skepticism", even though it wasn't called that until long after. Oldest does not equal purest, this is absolute nonsense.

Here's what I'm seeing in this thread:

Guy: "True skeptics adhere to X, and X is flawed."
Self-proclaimed skeptic: "I don't adhere to X."
Guy: "Then you're not a true skeptic."

What we end up arguing over is the definition for skepticism, and no real philosophy at all. There are obviously multiple forms of skepticism.

Deciding that there is a "pure" version so that it is convenient for you to attack is a cheap trick that doesn't really get you anywhere. It just allows you to use a snappy comeback like "well then, you aren't even a real skeptic".


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineDoom
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Phluck]
    #4156823 - 05/10/05 11:35 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

actually, he does explicity state in his discourse on method *I think therefore I am* (cogito ergo sum)


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Doom]
    #4156856 - 05/10/05 11:44 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

Do you have a source for that? I've been searching, and I've seen the phrase attributed to him but have never seen it in context.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
http://phluck.is-after.us


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OfflineDoom
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Re: Skepticism is self-destructive [Re: Phluck]
    #4156876 - 05/10/05 11:49 AM (12 years, 15 days ago)

*discourse on method* by Descartes


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