'sceptical doubt', is one of the 5 mental hindrances (nīvarana) and one of the 3 fetters (samyojana), which disappear for ever at Stream-entry, the first stage of holiness (s. ariya-puggala).
As a fetter, it refers to sceptical doubt about the Master (the Buddha), the Teaching, the Sangha, and the training; about things past and future, and conditionality (Dhs.1004; cf. A.X.71).
It also applies to uncertainty whether things are wholesome or not, to be practiced or not, of high or low value, etc.
According to Vis.M. XIV, 177, vicikicchā is the lack of desire to think (things out i.e. to come to a conclusion; vigata-cikicchā, desiderative to Ö cit, to think); it has the nature of wavering, and its manifestation is indecision and a divided attitude; its proximate cause is unwise attention to matters of doubt.
It is associated with one of the 2 classes of unwholesome consciousness rooted in delusion (Tab. I, No. 32). -
See also kankhā.