Re: Skepticism - its uses and abuses

From: Dr. David Campbell <>
Date: Mon Dec 12 2005 - 12:21:05 EST

> I guess what I'm saying is why can't one be skeptical but selectively
> so - the package seems to be that you have to be critical of
> everything, and corrode away faith and everything else.

We are to be wise as serpents but innocent as doves. Again, the
Bereans were commended for their searching to see if Paul's claims
were valid, and serving God with all our minds does not mesh well with
checking one's brains at the door.

Key issues seem to be:

Are we seeking for the truth and willing to accept it, or just
debunking everything?

Is equal skepticism applied to one's own position as to others?

It's easy to take potshots at actual or perceived weaknesses in
someone else's work when you aren't seriously examining your own
position for similar or the same problems. Antievolutionism
habitually falls into that trap, but there's plenty of company with
it. Cf. the weakness of the extreme sociobiological claim that all
human action is fully attributable to evolutionary motives. If so,
sociobiology is an evolutionary ploy, specifically an effort to
increase one's appeal to prospective mates by casting aspersions on
the motives of others and by appearing forthright.

Dr. David Campbell
425 Scientific Collections Building
Department of Biological Sciences
Biodiversity and Systematics
University of Alabama, Box 870345
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0345  USA
Received on Mon Dec 12 12:23:46 2005

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