Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Arrived at through inquiry.
  • n. A skeptic.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Seeking; proceeding by inquiry.
  • n. A seeker; -- a name adopted by some of the Pyrrhonists.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Proceeding by inquiry; seeking.
  • n. A seeker: a name adopted by some of the Pyrrhonists.

Etymologies

From Ancient Greek ζητητικός (zētētikos, "inquisitive, keen"), from ζητέω (zēteō, "I seek"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • His employment of the word zetetic is less doubtful, as he claims for his system that it alone is founded on the true seeking out of Nature's secrets.

    Myths and Marvels of Astronomy

  • If the Law, as discovered through revelation, declared that human flourishing is found in blind devotion to God while the philosophical imperative is skeptical and zetetic and finds human happiness in philosophical questioning, how can they coexist?

    Archive 2008-05-11

  • Since the Whole after which he lusts cannot be known, the philosopher cannot propose a dogmatic atheism and still retain his zetetic search.

    Archive 2008-05-11

  • Under the assumed name of Parallax he visited most of the chief towns of England, propounding what he calls his system of zetetic astronomy.

    Myths and Marvels of Astronomy

  • Twenty years ago De Morgan wrote that 'the founder of the zetetic astronomy gained great praise from provincial newspapers for his ingenuity in proving that the earth is a flat, surrounded by ice,' with the north polar ice in the middle.

    Myths and Marvels of Astronomy

  • The zetetic faithful reason about this matter as though the impressions of the senses were trustworthy under all conditions, familiar or otherwise; whereas, in point of fact, we know that the senses often deceive, even under familiar conditions, and almost always deceive under conditions, which are not familiar.

    Myths and Marvels of Astronomy

  • 'The zetetic system,' proceeds De Morgan, 'still lives in lectures and books; as it ought to do, for there is no way of teaching a truth comparable to opposition.

    Myths and Marvels of Astronomy

  • Tanguay finds the philosopher’s fundamentally erotic or zetetic way of life to preclude any dogmatic refutation of revelation.

    Archive 2008-05-11

  • Strauss’s attempt to resolve the problem of Jews in modern society took several early forms but did not gain satisfactory clarity until, through his study of the “moderate” medieval enlightenment in Judaism and Islam, Strauss rediscovered Platonic or zetetic philosophy.

    Archive 2008-05-11

Comments

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  • =A skeptical seeker of knowledge; proceeding by inquiry; a search or investigation.
    =A zetetic is thus a sort of intellectual agnostic who, while seeking greater truths, is always wary of falsehood.
    =A term originally used to refer to Pyrrhonists, a group of ancient Greek skeptics, it has come to mean both the process of inquiry and one who so proceeds.
    =From the Greek zetetikos, from zeteein to seek

    January 19, 2009

  • "What does it mean?" I wondered.

    October 10, 2008

  • Interesting, one of my favorite magazines, the Skeptical Inquirer, used to be called The Zetetic.

    May 16, 2008

  • (Webster's Revised Unabridged) Seeking; proceeding by inquiry.

    Zetetic method (Math.), the method used for finding the value of unknown quantities by direct search, in investigation, or in the solution of problems.

    May 15, 2008