Words can have a lot of implications. We can read into them, misinterpret them, take them for granted, misunderstand them. That whole sentence might just be many ways of saying the same thing: that unless you are actively listening and engaged with the person or people you are trying to talk to, there is no dialogue; no discussion by which to learn. It’s like going to church and listening to the homily and the readings. We are supposed to take meaning away from these, however what meaning needs to be explained sometimes.
This isn’t about religion though. It’s about everyday ordinary communication; well, almost.
Words are like swords, or perhaps lightsabers. The best example of this comes from a debate with someone who knows how to detach themselves from their argument (and their own opinions and values, morals and ethics). I don’t think I would ever want to debate with a humanities professor, because the vague impression I get is that every humanities professor thinks they are right, and they have the “logic” to back up their claims. This is the “comparable to religion” ideology in that you are to abide by a set of codes in return for God’s kindness and hopefully a good judgement when that time comes. Enter “free will” stage left. On the other side is science, which at least, the Catholic church respects. However, if you look strong and hard, you start to find people like Robert Sapolsky (look him up on YouTube) who believe that we are subject to fate as dictated by our biology. There’s two sides to a coin. This is a tangent.
Getting back on the subject of words, I mentioned detachment. This is a trait that supposedly “INTPs” show a lot of. I myself am INTP, according not only to various online tests, but also an official Myers-Briggs test before starting college. It’s also not ironic that most of my online friends who are also INTP/INTJ have become mentally ill in some fashion as these types usually develop some form of mental illness. Let’s not get into that.
The point I am trying to make, is that in an argument/debate with a detached person (who is perfectly rational and capable of reason, in case I need to point that out), can craft words mindfully to make arguments that don’t necessarily reflect upon the views of the individual (or group) you/they are arguing with.
Jumping backwards to the biology tangent I was making. There are a few very interesting things to point out about our evolutionary ancestors and especially about human beings. The first being that, female apes can “spoof” being in heat to attract males; but why? Humans take it one step further, actually having non-reproductive sex, usually aided with birth control pills or other contraceptives, purely for the satisfaction of having sex. So what does this have to do with arguments? Here’s the analogy: Human beings are capable of lying.
Now you get some really interesting twisted mashups. Just watch the news about the upcoming presidential race. Unethical, biased statistics or just plain incomplete data sets when reporting those “statistics”. It really is fake news! All crafted, carefully, to woo you over.
So, the next time someone pushes your buttons, realize just how easy it is to craft an argument that has nothing to do with yourself and what you really believe. Just be a contrarian. Don’t do this to your boss though, bad idea.