Sunday, December 30, 2012
"I value believing as many true things and as few false things as possible." -- Matt Dillahunty
This is, at it's heart, the core of Skepticism. Part of the value of this quote, to me at least, is something a bit more subtle than it first seems. Valuing truth and an aversion to falsehood is so deeply ingrained in my nature, that it's easy for me to assume that anyone who differs is faulty in some manner.
That's where I find the real value in this quote. It's the start, where he begins with "I value..." I believe that faith is a vice, rather than a virtue, and I believe that comfort will come naturally to most who understand the world around them.
My recent trip home to Alberta, and specifically to Calgary, really drove this home to me though. While I had a chance to visit with two dear friends from college who are ardent skeptics as well (though perhaps not as vocal as myself), I had a long drive with someone who is superstitious as a form of comfort, and was reminded of many other friends who were never skeptics in the first place. Many were certainly bright, but it just didn't register on their radar as something that was missing from their lives.
And maybe it isn't. While this trip hasn't exactly convinced me to dress in my finest attire and visit a congregation every Sunday to eat little bits of Jesus-bread, it certainly has made me hesitate a bit when I catch myself foaming over some particularly grandiose show of ignorance from my friends.
What other core values are there that I haven't recognized yet? Do you have these values yourself, and if so, why? Of course, these are not exclusive, but I think each of us will, generally, have one of these at the core of our endeavours.
My brief list so far:
- Skepticism (believing truths and disbelieving falsehoods)
- Comfort (family/security/superstition... perhaps this one could be unpacked a bit more)