Scepticism is the first step towards truth.
To 'choose' dogma and faith over doubt and experience is to throw out the ripening vintage and to reach greedily for the Kool-Aid.
And here is the point, about myself and my co-thinkers. Our belief is not a belief. Our principles are not a faith. We do not rely solely upon science and reason, because these are necessary rather than sufficient factors, but we distrust anything that contradicts science or outrages reason. We may differ on many things, but what we respect is free inquiry, openmindedness, and the pursuit of ideas for their own sake.
Traditions and dogmas rub one another down to a minimum in such centers of varied intercourse; where there are a thousand faiths we are apt to become sceptical of them all.
What is it you most dislike? Stupidity, especially in its nastiest forms of racism and superstition.
I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.
There once was a time when all people believed in God and the church ruled. This time was called the Dark Ages.
The terrible error in the course of human civilization is undoubtedly the defective judgment that allowed religious authorities usurp the foundation of societal morality, in which all collective ethics of humankind must take a cause. This appalling blunder is comparable only to assigning the leper exclusive franchise to run beauty clinics in the society; this can only lead to cycles upon cycles of common infection syndrome.
A Christian telling an atheist they're going to hell is as scary as a child telling an adult they're not getting any presents from Santa.
How do you give something away with the knowledge that you will get it back in three days, and then claim it to be the 'Ultimate Sacrifice'?
Johnson is a radical skeptic, insisting, in the best Socratic tradition, that everything be put on the table for examination. By contrast, most skeptics opposed to him are selective skeptics, applying their skepticism to the things they dislike (notably religion) and refusing to apply their skepticism to the things they do like (notably Darwinism). On two occasions I’ve urged Michael Shermer, publisher of Skeptic Magazine, to put me on its editorial board as the resident skeptic of Darwinism. Though Shermer and I know each other and are quite friendly, he never got back to me about joining his editorial board.
Modest doubt is call'd the beacon of the wise.
I do not want to believe. I want to know.
Scepticism, that dry caries of the intelligence.