Thursday, July 16, 2015
The Super Cynic
It has been said that a cynic is a man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. I think of a cynic or the act of being cynical as doubting something and being cautious about believing. I see three divisions of people in this.
The non-cynic: Those who are quick to accept and trust. Ideal candidates for Paradise, a place we could be trusting everyone. In this world such people are taken advantage of because it is anything but a Paradise morally.
The balanced cynic: They don't just believe - but can be convinced - and will change when something is reasonably proven. They do not need total proof to show some faith.
The super cynic: This is one who has turned a necessary quality into a weakness by being excessively cynical. To give an example, when my mother was young, a relative told my grandfather that at a certain place and time an apparition would appear. He said that was rubbish and that he would prove it. He went and stationed himself at the location and time described.
The next morning my young mum ran to her dad to find out what happened. He said the apparition appeared and he tried to investigate what it was, but couldn't explain it. My mum asked what he thought, and as the super cynic he was, said that were things we could not explain.
This is why the super cynic fails. My granddad found out something that blew his cynicism out of the water, then dismissed it with a glib response. Did he investigate any further? Did he change his beliefs in anyway? No, he remained with the same beliefs all his life. The super cynic has turned doubt into a state where they are in a mental rut. I recall explaining to a man why I believed in God and he couldn't argue with the reasoning, but finished off with a "We'll find out when we die".
Super cynics are forever doubting and are comfortable there. It's easy and requires nothing of them. They are either too proud or too lazy to accept a new idea and run with it. I have a necessary dose of cynicism to protect me. However, I don't want so much of it so that I refuse to act when clearly there is good reason to do so. Surely none of us wants to be a super cynic. It could stop us finding truth.