We have a duty to be skeptical

We have learned from history that we are often wrong about many things. The Earth was once thought to be flat. The stars were believed to be fixed in the sky, and it was also believed that they would fall down to the Earth one day according to the Bible. The Ptolemaic model of the solar system was once thought to be correct, and it even made accurate predictions (this was an astronomical model that had Earth at the center of the universe). Despite this, the Copernican model would replace it with even better predictions, and it would show that our solar system was indeed heliocentric (the Sun at the center). Think about this enormous error in our knowledge. Think about how much wider the door was opened for discovery once a false assumption was removed (the universe being geocentric).

I propose that the best way to make progress in the pursuit of knowledge is to question everything. If we claim to want to change the world and make it a better place, then we have a duty to be skeptical. A difference can be made if our perception of how to accomplish our goals is not misconstrued.

Scrutinize important claims. Being wrong can come at a terrible price. If you claim to pursue the truth, please remember, a hole in our knowledge is easier to fill if a fallacy hasn’t already taken its place.

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  1 comment for “We have a duty to be skeptical

  1. March 29, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    Yes! I completely agree! I get myself into trouble quite a bit when I tell people to question everything. People think I’m meaning it in a paranoid manner, but I mean question all the sciences, question all the “facts” – they all have changed from what they previously were in the past. Does that make them any less valid? No, but if we continue to challenge ideas then we develop new ideas and that’s how we evolve.

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