Skepticism vs Cynicism

As you know, I just got back from Skepticon 3 (It was freakin’ awesome!).  I posted pictures from it last night on my Facebook page.  I got a comment from a Christian friend of mine.  I gave a brief, but I hope, adequate response, which you will find below.

  • So Jay, how does one believe anything that is said at a Skepticon? Just curious.

    22 minutes ago · 
  • Jay Walker 

    Skepticism is a way of learning about the world through critical thinking and the evaluation of evidence. We are skeptical in the sense that we question ideas and beliefs by looking at them from all sides and taking in all the supporting evidence and information. It is like buying a car. You wouldn’t just buy it by taking the salesman’s word that it was a good car, you would look under the hood, look inside, take it for a test drive, kick the tires and so on. That is skepticism at work. In that case, you are skeptical of the salesman’s claim so you find out as much about the car as you can. Skepticism is not a rejection of beliefs. That’s cynicism not skepticism.

 

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