Argue In The Right Spirit and Learn

Posted on February 3, 2010

Shreya Krishnan:

How many of us have petty quarrels almost everyday and feel pained? Do we really have the maturity to respect an opinion, different from ours?

Most of us have a natural inclination towards people who share the same thinking and opinions as ours. More often than not, we keep this as the basis of our friendship. So when someone gives us a new perspective, a totally different opinion, why do we feel offended? A major reason for this could be that we define ourselves through our thinking. What would we be if we never “thought” a thing? We define our identity by our thinking. Don’t we? So when someone challenges our thinking, it’s a question of our character and identity more than per se our thinking. That explains why most people detest active discussions and difference of opinions.

I now wonder, what makes us think the way we do. A lot of factors contribute to our personality as a whole and more importantly to our thinking. The environment we are raised in, the kind of associations we make, the books we read and many more. So when we call our thought process, our own, is it really our own? Are we not just a congregation of different identities and thoughts? So we are individuals who chose this “unique combination” called our identities.

Now, why can’t we handle a little addition to this combination? Perhaps a different view could change our whole perception. Then why oppose it? What if we could just redefine our identities by different opinions? Letting down the guard and accepting that someone else’s thoughts are better than mine, would make us better individuals, wouldn’t it? Why not learn a thing or two from someone else? I don’t intend to say we shouldn’t defend our thinking. But fight in the right spirit. Argue with respect. Respect the fact that there exists an individual with a mind and thought as unique as ours. Learn as much as we can from anybody who can spread knowledge. The thumb rule for all arguments is – never get personal. When someone opposes you the next time, pause before you get angry.

For those of you who already smile and take difference of opinions, great going!

The writer is a correspondent and a features reporter of Youth Ki Awaaz.

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