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Sun Jan 6, 2019, 03:55 PM

Five Features of Better Arguments

Last edited Sun Jan 6, 2019, 04:41 PM - Edit history (1)

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/06/5-features-of-better-arguments/563672/

I ran across this article pretty randomly last night, appreciated the message and wanted to share.

I've always thought that the only reason to fight in a marriage is to fight FOR the marriage. Extending outward - we are all partners. All connected.

The article refers to the internet's "hyper-connected impersonality."
It's good to remember to stay human on a platform that is full of bots and psyops.


1. Take Winning Off the Table: Rather than seeking victory, the goal should be truth-seeking, with a reinstitution of civility in service of achieving it. Participants are charged with arguing in order to better understand.

2. Prioritize Relationships and Listen Passionately: As one audience member put it, the most constructive and rewarding arguments they’ve ever had involved people with whom maintaining a good relationship afterward was a high priority—an impetus for speaking and listening carefully.

3. Pay Attention to Context: “One aspect of this concerns history,” Liu said. “Every fight we have today, about immigration, about taxes, about the minimum wage, is a recapitulation of one of those core American arguments—about liberty versus equality, about central government versus local control, or individual responsibility versus collective responsibility—and the history of civic debates in this country has something to teach us about how we can make our way through this conversations today.

A second element is about emotion. If someone comes at you in an angry way, you have to adjust how you’re going to come back at them. And you have a choice about whether you’re going to mirror and double down or if you’re going to be the one to say, I’m gonna be the grown-up here and I’m going to deescalate—being emotionally intelligent about the patterns that we fall into.”

4. Embrace Vulnerability: “Every one of us can relate to the feeling, ‘I didn’t start this, I’m not going to extend the olive branch.’ Extend the olive branch,” Liu said.

5. Be Open: “You cannot possibly change another person’s mind,” Liu said, “if you’re not willing to have your own mind changed. You may be able to rack up debater’s points. But you won’t change their mind if they sense you aren’t willing to have your mind changed. It’s a matter of mindset but also ‘heart-set.’”

That isn’t the last word on how to argue. But anyone who embraces those five pieces of advice is almost guaranteed to have more constructive arguments.


"Almost" guaranteed.



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Reply Five Features of Better Arguments (Original post)
violetpastille Jan 2019 OP
guillaumeb Jan 2019 #1
violetpastille Jan 2019 #2
guillaumeb Jan 2019 #3

Response to violetpastille (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2019, 09:19 PM

1. So listening is required?

Recommended.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 08:48 PM

2. Not just listening, but apparently "passionate listening".

I'm trying.

Since reading the article I have been passionately listening to my family. We're pretty harmonious as a rule, mostly, but in the last couple of days our interactions have taken on a new sweetness. Being present for someone is the nicest thing you can ever do.

Contrariwise, if someone were being abusive to me, or trying to bait me into an argument for kicks - I don't think my passionate listening is required!

I can search for bits of truth, but then I gotta move on.

Life is sooo short.

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Response to violetpastille (Reply #2)

Fri Jan 11, 2019, 12:45 PM

3. Listening is difficult.

Listening for what is said, rather than what one wants to hear.

Listening for inspiration instead of listening to the noise all around us, and the noise in our minds.

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