AN APPRAISAL AND VINDICATION OF PHILOSOPHICAL SKEPTICISM
Keywords:Skepticism, Pyrrhonism, antecedent skepticism, consequent skepticism, dogmatism, discovery
With the traditional types of skepticism universally attacked and condemned, we are all familiar. The self-contradictory character of negative skepticism, detected in the assertion that ‘there is no truth’ is commonly assumed as sufficient to demonstrate its deadly fate. The self-contradiction is obvious and undeniable, but it should not be forgotten that the inconsistency visible from outside has not resulted in the demise of this theory. Rather, the value of skepticism has been significantly important to philosophy and science in general.
This paper attempts to rescue skepticism from the charge that it is self-contradictory and infertile by exalting its value in science and philosophy in general, both as positive and fecund. For the sake of clarity, the paper is divided into three parts. First, it would attempt to define skepticism ranging from its extreme to milder forms pointing out the core epistemic problems posited by it; second, it would show how skepticism has been treated as a superfluous enquiry or position in philosophy with special reference to Hume’s approach towards it; third and last, it would conclude by pointing out the value of skepticism in philosophy and science where we may discover the proof of its universal applicability.
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