When we talk about skeptics in Ancient Greece, we are talking about philosophical skepticism.
Philosophical skepticism is a school of philosophy that started in Ancient Greece.
The Greeks who followed this school of thought became known as skeptics.
Skeptics will take an idea of something around them, such as the idea of the Greek gods, and question if this idea really does exist.
Skeptics will analyze what is known about the topic. They will then question what is unknown about the topic.
These questions often create a sense of doubt. From there, skeptics will say that because there is not enough evidence to support the topic that the topic might not be true.
The skeptics believed that because we cannot always know what is true that we cannot always know what is wrong or right.
The school of skepticism was born at Plato’s Academy.
Once the school of skepticism started, the name of Plato’s Academy changed to the Center of the Skeptics.
Their ideas focused around many of Ancient Greek’s past philosophers, including Socrates.
Socrates believed that the smartest people in the world would realize they do not know anything.
Eventually, this thought became the center thought for the Center of the Skeptics.
While Socrates is usually credited with the thoughts surrounding the Center of the Skeptics, he can only take some of the credit.
Skepticism actually started with Ancient Greek philosopher, Pyrrhon. From there, one of Pyrrhon’s students, Timon, continued with the idea of skepticism.
Many Ancient Greek criticisms of skepticism stated that if they did not know anything at all, why should people continue to study philosophy.
In response, the skeptics said that people should not worry about what they do not know.
Instead, they should stay calm and relaxed about what they do not know because the gods will take care of everything they do not know.
Today, there is actually little known about Ancient Greek skeptics and their study of skepticism.
Most of this is because Pyrrhon did not write down any of his ideas and neither did any other students of skepticism.
Therefore, while skepticism was another study of the philosophy of Ancient Greece, it was not as popular as other ones, such as Stoicism.
Facts about skeptics:
- Skeptics believe we cannot believe much of anything around us because we do not know the truth.
- Skepticism was popular from between 300-100 B.C. and then lasted until the birth of Jesus.
- The word skeptic is not just an Ancient Greek word, it is a work known in many cultures across the world.
- Skeptic comes from the Greek word skeptikos, which means someone who is not satisfied with the answers so continues to look for the truth.
- There are different types of skepticism.
- Skepticism is either about everything or about one area.
- The skeptics were a group of philosophers
- Some of the ideas for skepticism came from Socrates.
Questions and Answers about skeptics:
1. The word skeptic came from which Greek word?
2. The skeptics started their school at Plato’s Academy and started to call the school what?
a. Center of the disbelievers
b. Center of the originals
c. Center of the Skeptics
3. Skepticism was popular from 300-100 B.C. until when?
a. The death of Jesus
b. The birth of Jesus
c. The death of Alexander the Great
4. Some of the ideas for skepticism came from which great Ancient Greek philosopher?
5. Who is the Ancient Greek philosopher that originally came up with the idea of skepticism?