Skepticism - Teal Swan Articles - Teal Swan Jump to content


Skepticism is the opposite of suspended judgment. It is the rigid judgment that absolute certain knowledge is impossible. This is why skepticism does not feel good emotionally to the skeptic or to those who are on the receiving end of the skeptic. It is tempting to think skepticism can be healthy but it cannot. There is no such thing as healthy skepticism. To experience how unhealthy skepticism is, next time you encounter skepticism, pay attention to and feel how skepticism robs things of energy and forward movement, a bit like water being thrown on a fire. Belief is the state of mind in which a person thinks something to be the case, with or without there being empirical evidence to prove that something is the case with factual certainty. Looking at this definition, it is easy to see that in theory, skepticism is the opposite of belief. But the problem is, you cannot actually walk the earth with no beliefs. The mind forms beliefs and judgments whether you know it or not and whether you like it or not. And the problem is that most of those beliefs never get questioned. They become the filter you perceive your life through and the basis by which reality forms around you. And so a skeptic is not actually suspending belief, instead they believe deeply in doubt. Your reality, being the byproduct of belief, will not be a pleasant one if doubt is the belief you operate your life by.
The actual vibration of doubt looks nothing like genuine uncertainty, instead it looks like disbelief. To doubt is to consider something unlikely. To consider something unlikely is to act as if you know. It is to pretend you know something that you do not know. It is to bring a sense of certainty to a universe of uncertainty. For this reason, doubt in all actuality, is the flip side of faith. Doubt is only another kind of faith. It is faith in the negative instead of faith in the positive. Like the shadow side of faith, to consider something unlikely (doubt) is to act as if you know. People use doubt to gain a sense of certainty and cognitive closure in the same way that people use faith to gain a sense of certainty and cognitive closure.
Faith goes hand in hand with belief. To have faith is to have positive confidence or trust in something. It is to think something is true, even without proof. If you are a person who doubts, you have a great capacity for faith. The only difference between you and a person, who is full of faith, is that you have endless confidence and trust for negative instead of positive outcomes and things. Like faith, doubt is a bridge between thinking and believing. It is best to burn this bridge down when the bridge does not benefit your journey. It is best to only build the bridge of doubt between thoughts that feel bad to think and things you don’t want to believe. It is best to build the bridge of faith only between thoughts that feel good and things you want to believe. When we begin to experience pain, is when we build the bridge of doubt between thoughts that feel good to think and things we want to believe. To understand more about faith, watch my video on YouTube titled: "Faith."
The ego seeks to define itself through creating polarity. It needs to be justified, it needs to be good, it needs to be superior, and most of all it needs to be right. It is tempting to believe that skepticism is the antidote to the ego’s need to be right. But in fact, skepticism is the ego’s disguised attempt to be superior and right. The skeptic is in a state of self-righteousness. Invalidating something else instantly puts the ego in a position of being valid. Skepticism is also the ego’s attempt to stay safe. How would someone stay safe by being skeptical? It allows one to avoid disappointment. There are very few things more painful than losing faith. There are very few things more painful than the pain caused by the nonfulfillment of one’s desires or positive expectations and the invalidation of one’s positive beliefs. It feels like we have fallen to the ground from great heights. So, we protect ourselves by not climbing, so we never again have to feel the fall. Having faith in the negative prevents us from disappointment. You will never meet a skeptic, who has not been deeply hurt by disappointment and who does not feel that truth, (even if it is brutal) is a form of security.
It is important to understand that it is not healthy to blindly believe everything. Optimism can be an escape and a state of closed mindedness as well. This is merely another from of ignorance and resistance and leads to all kinds of negative ends. You do not have to be a skeptic or a blind believer. The healthiest thing to do is to develop an open mind. Questioning is healthy. But there is no doubt involved in the process of questioning. Doubt is a state of resistance. It halts the momentum of progression. Questioning is actually a state of mind that causes progression, especially progression of thought. Questioning allows for truth to reveal itself naturally. And because it is not invalidating (like skepticism is) it never feels bad to the questioner or the thing being questioned. People are not stupid; we can feel the difference between being doubted and being questioned. There is a totally different energetic frequency to questioning the validity of something and invalidating something. Approach life with an attitude of curiosity. There are times when we simply do not know. At times like this, I urge you to consider to choose to believe something that serves you, regardless of whether you are sure it is true or not. Practice holding onto your beliefs loosely instead of letting the ego latch onto them for the sake of its own safety and survival. Hold to beliefs mentally as you would a baby bird, so as to not crush it and so as to let it fly away if it is in alignment with the highest good.
If you are skeptical, the time has come to get present to and aware of the pain in your life, especially the disappointment and distrust. Cynicism and skepticism are a bit like twins that travel as a pair. No child is born skeptical or cynical so ask yourself these two questions: When did I start being skeptical or cynical? What does skepticism keep me safe from? In the moment that we feel skeptical, we need to ask ourselves what we are really afraid of and resistant to in this situation. We need to allow compassion and loving understanding to enter the space for the self that adopted the rigid attitude of doubt so as to protect itself from those things. For example, if I am skeptical of someone being who or what they say they are, I may find that in truth I am afraid of being duped. My lack of self-trust leads me to feel resistant and guarded towards others, as I fear I may be led astray. On this note, there is no such thing as a skeptic who genuinely trusts himself or herself. So, if you are a skeptic, I encourage you to watch my video on YouTube titled: “How to Trust Yourself.” Skepticism is all about trying to stay safe. To let go of skepticism, you need to willingly step past your comfort zone. You have to go into an area mentally and emotionally that is completely new and unknown. Skepticism is a good disguise for fear. And like I said earlier, skepticism is not a state of uncertainty. It is a state of negative certainty. Therefore embracing uncertainty is the direction of healing. To understand more about uncertainty and how to deal with it, watch my video on YouTube titled: “Uncertainty (How To Deal With Uncertainty)”. When you are presented with ideas and things that you would normally doubt, instead consider the potential validity by asking the question… What if? This is a bit like genuinely trying an idea on for size, just like you would a pair of pants at a department store. You don’t need to be afraid of trying out new ideas and beliefs as if they were true. If it doesn’t fit or end up adding to your life, you can always take it off again.
If you are a skeptic, it is time to see that you are not in fact in the vibration of neutrality and openness any more than someone who uses ignorant optimism to avoid truths that are uncomfortable to face. Instead, you are in a permanent state of distrust and you have decided that a negative outlook serves you better than a positive one. Ask yourself why this is the case. A negative approach to life prevents you from some forms of pain, especially pain caused by the loss of something positive. But it does so by keeping you in pain. Positive thinking is not a Pollyanna state of willing ignorance. It can be a commitment to intentionally creating your life and it comes from the understanding that a belief is only as good as it does. So the question is, what do your painful thoughts and beliefs actually do for you?
Question your beliefs, especially the ones that feel painful. If you are skeptical, you have plenty of them. Are you ready for the ultimate chess move? Ironically, you can use your own skepticism against yourself positively, by using it to disprove your own painful beliefs. Everyone you meet on the street will know something that you don’t. This makes the world a place full of opportunity for new truths to reveal themselves to you. Let this excite you rather than threaten you. And by approaching the world with this kind of excitement to try out new perspectives and potential truths, your life will be one of adventure, magic and miracles. A state of skepticism is a state of closed minded and closed hearted pain. Our life is the byproduct of belief. If our belief takes the form of doubt, we limit ourselves and we limit others and we limit the universe at large. We cannot be a match to experiencing miracles and we cannot be a match to experiencing anything beyond our negative faith and doubt at the same time. The realm of magic and mystery is closed to our perception. So step outside your comfort zone and consider. And see what this world reveals to you then.


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