Saturday, April 15, 2006

What, pray tell, is a "skeptical point-of-view"?

On one of the projects in which I am engaged, I was "accused" by another project member of having a "skeptical point-of-view" (which means that my refusal to accept his age-old spiritual point-of-view is simply incompreshensible in his version of reality).

Of course, this appellation with which he labelled me leads one to the pose the following:

What is this "skeptical point-of-view" other than an oxymoronic neologism, a paradox, a contradiction in terms?

After all, "skeptical" comes from the Greek word ςκεπτικος (''skepticos''), which means "thoughtful, inquiring" -- the antithesis of a point-of-view.

Obviously, to many in these benighted times, this process of thinking, of inquiring, of refusing to accept things on blind, mindless faith alone is not merely anathema, but also ''bad''. This view, to me, would be the absurdist view, a viewpoint driven by fear of knowledge -- for knowledge, driven by thought and inquiry and inspection and the gathering of data, unfettered by the constraints of mythology, destroys mystery and is thus "uncomfortable" to those who revel in the warm, menticidal embrace of such mystery.

If this then is the "skeptical point-of-view" -- the desire to know things rationally -- I consider the other project member's intended insult actually to be quite the compliment.


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