Is it really that we are inherently cruel? Are we repeating what we have heard elsewhere? Do we generate the opinions that we convey in our own mind alone? What would others gain from keeping us in constant contention? It is inevitable that we will all find our self drawn into disagreement at some point in the near future. In some cases we may find that our ideas are more accepted and generally more correct. We serve no purpose in these situations to capitalize on the failure of our companion. Why gloat? Why demean? Why revel? We have control over this. This is the easier of the circumstances that we will face however.
How about we imagine the time in the near future when we find our self at a loss for words. Our idea might not be entirely off the mark, but we lack the ability or knowledge to respond to a counter point. Even further imagine that we suddenly realize that we may actually be wrong. Shall we dig in our heels and stoop to name-calling? Should we ignore the point and attempt to divert attention? What about an effort to defame the character of the individual that is making reasonable points? Do we think that this will help others fall in line with us? It is not our fault though. In the Western culture we are programmed to behave in this manner from the time that we are children. This is a weakness, to be proven wrong. We must not allow it. At all costs we are instructed to never give in. Why spend our efforts and time creating long lists of defenses and excuses? If after much thought and contemplation we become illumined to the fact that we are truly wrong then don't ignore it, admit it.
When we are truly in the wrong, others see this, they know. Any attempt to hide it or to ignore it or to cover it up or to sweep it under the rug will not work. These in fact kindle disdain and distrust. Jesus Christ teaches us on this matter, “Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.” When we are wrong or even if we may be wrong, admit it. Admit it as quickly as humanly possible to as many people that have been affected. Do it with more passion and energy than a man exerts when proposing marriage to a woman. When we admit our failures, we become free from the realm of gossip. "At least he admitted he was wrong," they might say instead. Rather than the focus remaining on the giant elephant in the room, we can begin to move on to discover how we failed, how we were misled, how we lost control of our own ability to reason. We might even accidentally gain respect from others in the process.
Copyright © Robert Clinton Chedester 2012