Ridiculous and Ridiculously Awesome: Argument

You know what’s ridiculously awesome? The incredibly diverse perspectives people in our world have, and our ability to respectfully share those perspectives with one another.

In the past few weeks, I’ve had an ongoing argument with an old friend on Facebook. I am strongly against most everything he posts related to Muslims and refugees. This has led to lengthy discussions, in the forms of comments on posts and private messages, as well. While I completely disagree with his points of view, I respect his right to have them and to safely and considerately share them. He has opened my mind to another perspective I had not seen.

Another difference in opinion came with a fellow blogger recently. We had a great discussion about what love is. He feels love towards all kinds of people, regardless of how well he knows them. I reserve this term for those with whom I am very close – family, long-term friends, a romantic partner. While I disagree with his viewpoint, I respect his right to have it and understand his reasoning. His perspective is new and intriguing to me.

Yesterday, I had an intense argument with my friend’s mom and their family friend about education. If you don’t know me that well, you may not know how excited I get about education talks. Well, now you know me a little better. I love this kind of discussion (so long as it doesn’t continue to be the same-old topics and ideas). Later I told my friend that her mom was yelling at me about education (haha!). It was all in good fun, but she was also very passionate about the discussion and it showed. While I completely disagree with the majority of her views on education, I fully respect her right to have these opinions and understand where the views come from (there was a cultural factor to take into account). Yet another perspective explained to me.

The many perspectives the world’s citizens have and our ability to respectfully discuss, debate, and argue about them… that’s awesome!

But you know what’s ridiculous? Thinking that argument is bad; not embracing the power of argument in order to see others’ perspectives.

Many years ago, in my ignorant youth, I had a heated… we’ll call it discussion… with my then-boyfriend about the word argument. I reserved said word for any interaction that wasn’t quite a fight, but wasn’t positive either. He was adamant that an argument was simply like a less formal version of a debate. Years later, in my slightly-less-ignorant, and somewhat-older youth, I realize that he was right. You see, I enjoyed the practice of arguing, but called it something different. He got me thinking about what the word meant (and what we were, in fact, doing). It’s a simple example, but that argument got me thinking about his perspective, and questioning my own perspective. In the end, I decided he was right. It’s not always about right and wrong but, as with that argument and all the others I’ve had since, you always come out with a slightly better understanding of the world – even if you haven’t changed your opinion. You see, argument shows us how others see the world. Argument helps us to form our opinions. Argument leads us to truth.

It’s ridiculous to think that argument, confrontation, and difference of opinions is bad. Argument is not a negative thing. It doesn’t mean you’re fighting. Be respectful and open-minded. Take off the gloves. Don’t go in thinking, “I’m going to win this argument,” because an argument is not a debate: You don’t need to “win”.

Embrace different perspectives. Embrace argument to learn and form your own opinions. Don’t be ridiculous. Be ridiculously awesome!

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15 thoughts on “Ridiculous and Ridiculously Awesome: Argument

  1. I agree understanding where a person is coming from when we talk or discuss things will not lead into a fight unless we are there to win the argument and try to convince others to agree with us. Argument becomes negative when people don’t respect other people’s opinion or at least try to know why they have that point of view. I think being ridiculously awesome as you said means that a person becomes aware that not everything revolves around him/her and it is not only his/her opinion that matters or that only his/her way of viewing things is the correct one or the truth. However, people have their own convictions and sometimes we maybe guilty of telling ourselves that the way they see things is wrong so I like the way you share your views in this post and how you see things or you see new perspective as interesting. You are ridiculously awesome!

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    • You’re absolutely right about when an argument can turn into a fight. The only time I truly struggle is when I feel I have strong evidence to support my side and the other side is based on feelings, faith, etc. Then there just isn’t any point in discussing. (Can you tell I am an atheist/agnostic?) Thanks for the thoughtful comment – you’re also ridiculously awesome!!

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  2. Well, unless one said his/her thoughts and directly told me that they are atheist/agnostic I have no way of knowing. I am a bible based kind of person so I guess we have difference there but I do believe everything that we said we believe in somewhere somehow there is a reason for that or that there is someone/something that influenced us to have that belief/faith/conviction…it doesn’t just come out of nowhere. In terms of evidence…sometimes even if there is an overwhelming evidence to support once faith/belief/convictions but the other party in discussion/argument will not take it as valid and of course he/she can also give evidence on his/her part then of course there will be no way of saying someone will win the argument/discussion…that is why debate exist…it is up to the listener/reader whose side they will take on…there is a winner usually because majority rules but it doesn’t mean they won everybody’s mindset…differences in convictions can sometimes even lead to war or terrorism…just to prove they are right…but nobody really won…for me we can all win if we all apply at least love, kindness and understanding which I believe is inherent to all of us (any culture, religion, faith, country we might come from) but can be lost because of different reasons. Stay awesome!

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    • You make a good point about beliefs all coming from somewhere, and there being evidence (however one may define that) to support a belief. I’ve had many faith-based arguments, and have decided not to engage in them anymore because the definitions of evidence are different and therefore, as you say, there is no way of someone “winning”. The only purpose here is, like you pointed out, debate where an audience needs to form an opinion or make a decision.

      It’s a shame that difference in opinions does lead to war and such hatred. Love, kindness, and understanding – the recipe for victory! 🙂

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  3. Interesting post 😉

    Just found this blog. Sounds like you are having a blast travelling. I know this is something you always wanted to do. I am happy for you. Thanks for sharing.

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