Scepticism Quotes

Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Categories: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
this-scepticism-is-same-scepticism-i-heard-generation-ago-in-ussr-when-few-thought-that-democratic-transformation-behind-iron-curtain-was-natan-sharansky
scepticism-is-necessary-vital-part-journalists-toolkit-but-when-scepticism-becomes-cynicism-it-can-close-off-thought-block-search-for-truth-jeremy-paxman
there-is-lot-scepticism-today-as-to-whether-memoir-is-real-but-when-fiction-is-done-at-certain-level-there-is-scepticism-as-to-whether-it-is-really-junot-diaz
we-must-be-sceptical-even-our-scepticism-bertrand-russell
she-believed-in-nothing-only-her-scepticism-kept-her-from-being-atheist-jeanpaul-sartre
scepticism-is-first-step-towards-truth-denis-diderot
scepticism-is-beginning-faith-oscar-wilde
scepticism-as-we-know-can-never-be-thoroughly-applied-else-life-would-come-to-standstill-george-eliot
we-have-idea-truth-invincible-to-all-scepticism-blaise-pascal
theres-certain-kind-scepticism-that-cant-bear-uncertainty-rupert-sheldrake
scepticism-that-dry-caries-of-the-intelligence
whatever-your-career-may-be-do-not-let-yourselves-become-tainted-by-deprecating-barren-scepticism-louis-pasteur
healthy-scepticism-is-basis-all-accurate-observation-arthur-conan-doyle
scepticism-is-always-back-road-leading-to-some-credo-other-mason-cooley
scepticism-is-barren-coast-without-harbor-lighthouse-henry-ward-beecher
nothing-fortifies-scepticism-more-than-fact-that-there-are-some-who-are-not-sceptics-if-all-were-they-would-be-wrong-blaise-pascal
the-shadow-scepticism-is-dispelled-in-light-real-knowledge-etienne-de-lamour
ive-lost-all-capacity-for-disbelief-im-not-sure-that-i-could-even-rise-to-little-gentle-scepticism-tom-stoppard
scepticism-is-never-certain-itself-being-less-firm-intellectual-position-than-pose-to-justify-bad-behavior-fulton-j-sheen
the-history-science-alone-can-keep-physicist-from-mad-ambitions-dogmatism-as-well-as-despair-pyrrhonian-scepticism-pierre-duhem
in-all-events-life-we-ought-still-to-preserve-our-scepticism-if-we-believe-that-fire-warms-water-refreshes-it-is-only-because-it-costs-us-too-much-david-hume
you-do-yourself-no-favour-if-you-let-your-sense-doubtmistrustscepticism-to-rise-up-within-you-to-point-where-you-must-look-every-gift-horse-in-mouth-isabella-koldras
no-conclusions-can-be-more-agreeable-to-scepticism-than-such-as-make-discoveries-concerning-weakness-narrow-limits-human-reason-capacity-david-hume
the-great-subverter-pyrrhonism-excessive-principles-scepticism-is-action-employment-occupations-common-life-david-hume
he-had-found-thing-which-modern-people-call-impressionism-which-is-another-name-for-that-final-scepticism-which-can-find-no-floor-to-universe-gk-chesterton
on-new-years-eve-he-ould-make-resolution-to-recover-some-his-previous-scepticism-but-until-then-he-would-do-as-romans-do-smile-at-people-even-if-he-nick-hornby
scepticism-is-effortful-costly-it-is-better-to-be-sceptical-about-matters-large-consequences-be-imperfect-foolish-human-in-small-aesthetic-nassim-nicholas-taleb
i-find-that-critics-voluntary-service-are-all-too-often-those-who-are-prepared-to-accept-such-services-when-they-require-them-but-deride-them-with-cynicism-scepticism-when-they-s
the-scepticism-which-men-affect-towards-their-higher-inspirations-is-often-not-honest-doubt-but-guilty-negligence-is-sign-narrow-mind-defective-wisdom-james-martineau
scepticism-like-wisdom-springs-out-in-full-panoply-only-from-brain-god-it-is-little-profit-to-see-idea-in-its-growth-unless-we-track-its-seed-to-james-anthony-froude
scepticism-refusal-authority-is-at-heart-scientific-endeavour-scientific-knowledge-dictates-economic-possibilities-david-landes
the-more-she-rejected-us-more-convinced-i-was-that-she-was-another-version-real-molly-her-disdain-for-authority-her-scepticism-that-she-had-to-do-what-white-man-told-her-because-
scepticism-is-as-important-for-good-journalist-as-it-is-for-good-scientist-freeman-dyson
a-major-problem-for-black-women-all-people-color-when-we-are-challenged-to-oppose-antisemitism-is-our-profound-scepticism-that-white-people-can-barbara-smith
there-is-but-one-indefectibly-certain-truth-that-is-truth-that-pyrrhonistic-scepticism-itself-leaves-standing-truth-that-present-phenomenon-william-james
oxford-also-taught-me-something-else-it-taught-me-scepticism
we-are-talking-about-bet-remember-pascal-wasnt-claiming-that-his-wager-enjoyed-anything-but-long-odds-would-you-bet-on-gods-valuing-dishonestly-faked-belief-even-honest-belief-ov
In fact this desire for consonance in the apocalyptic data, and our tendency to be derisive about it, seem to me equally interesting. Each manifests itself, in the presence of the other, in most of our minds. We are all ready to be sceptical about Father Marystone, but we are most of us given to some form of 'centurial mysticism, ' and even to more extravagant apocalyptic practices: a point I shall be taking up in my fourth talk. What it seems to come to is this. Men in the middest make considerable imaginative investments in coherent patterns which, by the provision of an end, make possible a satisfying consonance with the origins and with the middle. That is why the image of the end can never be permanently falsified. But they also, when awake and sane, feel the need to show a marked respect for things as they are; so that there is a recurring need for adjustments in the interest of reality as well as of control. This has relevance to literary plots, images of the grand temporal consonance; and we may notice that there is the same co-existence of naive acceptance and scepticism here as there is in apocalyptic. Broadly speaking, it is the popular story that sticks most closely to established conventions; novels the clerisy calls 'major' tend to vary them, and to vary them more and more as time goes by. I shall be talking about this in some detail later, but a few brief illustrations might be useful now. I shall refer chiefly to one aspect of the matter, the falsification of one's expectation of the end. The story that proceeded very simply to its obviously predestined end would be nearer myth than novel or drama. Peripeteia, which has been called the equivalent, in narrative, of irony in rhetoric, is present in every story of the least structural sophistication. Now peripeteia depends on our confidence of the end; it is a disconfirmation followed by a consonance; the interest of having our expectations falsified is obviously related to our wish to reach the discovery or recognition by an unexpected and instructive route. It has nothing whatever to do with any reluctance on our part to get there at all. So that in assimilating the peripeteia we are enacting that readjustment of expectations in regard to an end which is so notable a feature of naive apocalyptic. And we are doing rather more than that; we are, to look at the matter in another way, re-enacting the familiar dialogue between credulity and scepticism. The more daring the peripeteia, the more we may feel that the work respects our sense of reality; and the more certainly we shall feel that the fiction under consideration is one of those which, by upsetting the ordinary balance of our naive expectations, is finding something out for us, something real. The falsification of an expectation can be terrible, as in the death of Cordelia; it is a way of finding something out that we should, on our more conventional way to the end, have closed our eyes to. Obviously it could not work if there were not a certain rigidity in the set of our expectations.

Frank Kermode
in-fact-this-desire-for-consonance-in-apocalyptic-data-our-tendency-to-be-derisive-about-it-seem-to-me-equally-interesting-each-manifests-itself-in-presence-other-in-most-our-min
Apocalypse is a part of the modern Absurd. This is testimony to its vitality, a vitality dependent upon its truth to the set of our fear and desire. Acknowledged, qualified by the scepticism of the clerks, it is-even when ironized, even when denied-an essential element in the arts, a permanent feature of a permanent literature of crisis. If it becomes myth, if its past is forgotten, we sink quickly into myth, into stereotype. We have to employ our knowledge of the fictive. With it we can explain what is essential and eccentric about early modernism, and purge the trivial and stereotyped from the arts of our own time. Great men deceived themselves by neglecting to do this; other men, later, have a programme against doing it. The critics should know their duty. Part of this duty, certainly, will be to abandon ways of speaking which on the one hand obscure the true nature of our fictions-by confusing them with myths, by rendering spatial what is essentially temporal-and on the other obscure our sense of reality by suggesting that fictions represent some kind of surrender or false consolation. The critical issue, given the perpetual assumption of crisis, is no less than the justification of ideas of order. They have to be justified in terms of what survives, and also in terms of what we can accept as valid in a world different from that out of which they come, resembling the earlier world only in that there is biological and cultural continuity of some kind. Our order, our form, is necessary; our skepticism as to fictions requires that it shall not be spurious. It is an issue central to the understanding of modern literary fiction, and I hope in my next talk to approach it more directly.

Frank Kermode
apocalypse-is-part-modern-absurd-this-is-testimony-to-its-vitality-vitality-dependent-upon-its-truth-to-set-our-fear-desire-acknowledged-qualified-by-scepticism-clerks-it-iseven-
In the nouveau roman of Robbe-Grillet there is an attempt at a more or less Copernican change in the relation between the paradigm and the text. In Camus the counter-pointing is less doctrinaire; in Dostoevsky there is no evidence of any theoretical stand at all, simply rich originality within or without, as it chances, normal expectations. All these are novels which most of us would agree (and it is by a consensus of this kind only that these matters, quite rightly, are determined) to be at least very good. They represent in varying degrees that falsification of simple expectations as to the structure of a future which constitutes peripeteia. We cannot, of course, be denied an end; it is one of the great charms of books that they have to end. But unless we are extremely naive, as some apocalyptic sects still are, we do not ask that they progress towards that end precisely as we have been given to believe. In fact we should expect only the most trivial work to conform to pre-existent types. It is essential to the drift of all these talks that what I call the scepticism of the clerisy operates in the person of the reader as a demand for constantly changing, constantly more subtle, relationships between a fiction and the paradigms, and that this expectation enables a writer much inventive scope as he works to meet and transcend it. The presence of such paradigms in fictions may be necessary-that is a point I shall be discussing later-but if the fictions satisfy the clerisy, the paradigms will be to a varying but always great extent attenuated or obscured. The pressure of reality on us is always varying, as Stevens might have said: the fictions must change, or if they are fixed, the interpretations must change. Since we continue to 'prescribe laws to nature'-Kant's phrase, and we do-we shall continue to have a relation with the paradigms, but we shall change them to make them go on working. If we cannot break free of them, we must make sense of them.

Frank Kermode
in-nouveau-roman-robbegrillet-there-is-attempt-at-more-less-copernican-change-in-relation-between-paradigm-text-in-camus-counterpointing-is-less-doctrinaire-in-dostoevsky-there-i
All the great groups that stood about the Cross represent in one way or another the great historical truth of the time; that the world could not save itself. Man could do no more. Rome and Jerusalem and Athens and everything else were going down like a sea turned into a slow cataract. Externally indeed the ancient world was still at its strongest; it is always at that moment that the inmost weakness begins. But in order to understand that weakness we must repeat what has been said more than once; that it was not the weakness of a thing originally weak. It was emphatically the strength of the world that was turned to weakness and the wisdom of the world that was turned to folly. In this story of Good Friday it is the best things in the world that are at their worst. That is what really shows us the world at its worst. It was, for instance, the priests of a true monotheism and the soldiers of an international civilisation. Rome, the legend, founded upon fallen Troy and triumphant over fallen Carthage, had stood for a heroism which was the nearest that any pagan ever came to chivalry. Rome had defended the household gods and the human decencies against the ogres of Africa and the hermaphrodite monstrosities of Greece. But in the lightning flash of this incident, we see great Rome, the imperial republic, going downward under her Lucretian doom. Scepticism has eaten away even the confident sanity of the conquerors of the world. He who is enthroned to say what is justice can only ask: 'What is truth?' So in that drama which decided the whole fate of antiquity, one of the central figures is fixed in what seems the reverse of his true role. Rome was almost another name for responsibility. Yet he stands for ever as a sort of rocking statue of the irresponsible. Man could do no more. Even the practical had become the impracticable. Standing between the pillars of his own judgement-seat, a Roman had washed his hands of the world.

G.K. Chesterton
all-great-groups-that-stood-about-cross-represent-in-one-way-another-great-historical-truth-time-that-world-could-not-save-itself-man-could-do-no-more-rome-jerusalem-athens-every
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