The purpose of an argument is to get closer to the truth not to prove who is right.
A lot of our day to day issues require conflict resolution and problem solving.
From police brutality, to social justice, income, gender inequality, and any other political or social issue countries go through.
It’s normal to have different opinions, stances and opposing arguments when it comes to triggering social issues.
And it’s crucially important for both sides to be heard, fact checked, and open for debate.
Because when we debate we are not battling ourselves, we are doing a live experiment of our arguments, and this experiment leads us closer to the truth of the issue.
It’s important to have a mutual middle ground where we meet the opposing side with intent to understand it.
Yet when approaching these issues, opposing sides tend to take radical stances in attempts to reach a common ground.
But one society cannot function and not yet progress if the opinion of the both opposing sides is not heard.
Each side is biased so we need to filter the opinions of biases, see the facts, and use them as a tool to see the underlying issues that are currently holding all of us back from progress.
That’s why any form of radicalism should be avoided in one society that intends to progress on a foundation of truth and justice.
3 Reasons Why Radicalism Can’t Exist in a Progressing Society:
1. The radical stances aim for negotiation, not for justice.
The idea being that each side considers themselves the side that is right, unequivocally and without a doubt.
It could also be that they assume that’s what will help them win, or reap greater rewards, in any sort of negotiations or discourse.
The myth being that, when negotiating you should impose high demands in order to eventually settle somewhere in the middle.
These factors play a role in establishing radical stances in society and spread the behavior of radical thinking and radical political groups.
Both sides are biased, and both sides demand extremes. Not with an intention to establish justice, but to settle for more and gain more benefit.
2. Extreme stances do not breed results, just conflict.
When two extremes fight without compromise nobody within society benefits long term. The extreme approach is a never ending game of conflict without progressive results for society.
For example, let’s take two sides, one are the ones who fight for social justice and the other side is the police.
The ones who fight for social justice ask for a complete and total defunding of the police.
The opposing groups refuse to admit that a problem exists and agree with everything that the police does.
This is a never ending and exhausting game of “political tug of war” where both sides keep pulling on the rope with the aim to get the opposing side to cave. Needless to say, this approach is a useless and anti productive one.
3. Radical beliefs are a game of competition, not a dynamic of progress.
Radical beliefs are a game where one side must lose for another to win. In such game society ultimately is in turmoil, there is no mutual progress.
Radical beliefs and approaches tend to be accompanied with a zero sum mindset. Meaning that, there cant be two beneficial parties. One has to be the loser and the other the winner. And such is the decay of discourse.
It is the complete failure of coexistence and living in harmony. As long as such a mindset and approach towards conflict resolution and discourse exists, then the society that applies them is bound to live in a perpetual state of tension and animosity.
Such animosity tends to build towards violence.
Referring to the same example given above about social justice fighters, we have seen increased occurrences of violent altercations and incidents, where the two parties came to blows because of this built up animosity.
And this is the prime example of how radicalism succeeds in tearing down societies, and hinders discourse from taking place and resolving disputes and conflicts.
How to Have a Healthy Dynamic for Progressive Society:
The recipe is simple.
Humility and Curiosity, with tiny amount of Compassion on top.
First we need humility.
We need to embrace the fact that no matter how sure we are in our own beliefs, there is always a room for debate and argumentation.
If you do not feel comfortable to debate your beliefs, to put your stances on the line with intent to test their validity, you are the one who is not really sure in their validity
Scientists do experiments to prove their hypothesis.
And even if their experiments give desired results, they still do multiple variations of the experiment, because they primarily seek the truth of reality and not what they want to be true in reality.
We must learn to love our beliefs and ideas, but at the same time acknowledge that these beliefs and ideas are not universal, meaning not everyone will agree with them.
And in all probability we have some fallacy in each of our beliefs, no matter what side you are on. If there wasn’t a fallacy, we would have been living without arguments.
Then we can find curiosity.
We must put our fiery Egos aside and embrace the fact that the other side probably sees something we don’t. This should make us curious not furious.
And with curiosity we can find a middle ground where we can test our stances, where we can debate for the intention of finding the truth and progress forward as humans.
The most important thing for finding a middle ground is compassion toward one another. We are all human beings, no matter what we believe in.
Because if we keep playing to prove what side is right, we all lose in the grand game of life that demands from us to unite as one.
Once we learn how to do that, then we can let go of the radical mindset that serves as shutters to our vision.
We can allow room for discourse, in order to find common ground, and reach a consensual understand amongst all parties, in order to live in a community where everyone has a say.
How to Use This Article?
👉 Step 1. Evaluate what are your most extreme stances and beliefs.
👉 Step 2. Question their validity, put them to the test, assume the opposite and see what are the potential fallacies.
👉 Step 3. Find someone with an opposing stance and listen to them with compassion, try to see where they are coming from and why do they believe in what they believe. See if you can find a middle ground between you two and a mutual belief both of you can share.
All the knowledge on the planet will not help you if you do not take action.