Against Enjoying Doubt for Its Own Sake

In a day when the only thing one is allowed to be certain of is that one isn’t certain of anything, Chesterton is like a shot of whiskey in a room full of teetotalers:

I have an emotion of joy which lends considerable pleasure to my countenance when somebody tells me that certitude never smiles. For it seems to me that nothing else except certitude can ever really and truly smile. I do not admit that my joy is merely in my doubt or even merely in my change. Joy is in the fact that I’m moving from doubt, which is a weak and undeveloped condition, to conviction, which is a strong and mature condition. I think it is in the fact that doubt is in its nature a process and not a conclusion. Anybody who enjoys doubt for its own sake must prefer a treadmill to a travel or a journey’s end.

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2 thoughts on “Against Enjoying Doubt for Its Own Sake”

  1. It seems these days with many writers, academics, etc., they don’t doubt because they are honestly unsure of the truth or even because they find the truth inconvenient and want to avoid it, but rather, they doubt because it makes them seem like somebody to their peers. I’ll never understand what’s so attractive about not knowing something. Also, I greatly enjoyed your characterization of Chesterton.

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