All posts by John Messerly

Some People Know More Than I Do

“I know how unfashionable it is now to acknowledge in life or history any genius loftier than ourselves. Our democratic dogma has leveled not only all voters but all leaders; we delight to show that living geniuses are only mediocrities, and that dead ones are myths. … Since it is contrary to good manners to exalt ourselves, we achieve the same result by slyly indicating how inferior are the great men of the earth.” ~ Will Durant (The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time) Continue reading Some People Know More Than I Do

I Can’t Stay Away

I will publish a number of new posts in few days. I wanted a vacation from thinking and writing but—after almost 50 years since my higher education—your work becomes such a part of you that it is hard to disengage. I will continue to intersperse some previous posts too but there is too much happening in my mind and in the world to quit writing new posts. Hopefully, some may benefit from my musings.

The Democratic Virtues Of Skepticism

Pyrrho in Thomas Stanley History of Philosophy.jpgPyrrho of Elis is credited as being the first Greek skeptic philosopher.

(This essay first appeared at 3 Quarks Daily on July 13, 2020. Reprinted with permission.)

Skepticism is the view that knowledge is unattainable. It comes in varying strengths. In the strongest version, it is a thesis about all knowledge, the global denial that anyone has ever known anything. Continue reading The Democratic Virtues Of Skepticism