What To Expect When You Debate to Learn

When you debate to learn, you’re going to do 3 things that piss most (i.e. average) people off.

1) You’ll be “right” most of the time. At the very least, your reasoning will be easier to defend with objective facts rather than subjective opinions. This is the result of learning and readily casting off erroneous thoughts in favor of more sound ideas.

This is only possible if your objective in each argument is to learn something new, sharper previous ideas and discard all ideas that do not stand up to reality. People who debate with the intent of boosting their ego or destroying yours will suffer from outmoded ideas that lose to the evolution of thought. Every time.

2) You’ll admit you’re wrong. The only thing average people have a harder time with than being wrong is accepting someone else’s admission of error. This is what happens when you argue to degrade instead of to learn or teach. The victory is in how bad you can make another feel. Admitting you’re wrong robs them of this feeling.

This eliminates you as an adversary and prepares you to be a student. Not only do most people have no real desire to teach, they lament you for wanting to learn. Even if they were capable of teaching you to see things from a different perspective (a feat that requires sharpened reasoning and up to date thinking i.e. point 1), they wouldn’t want. They define themselves by what they’re against rather than what they’re for. Remove yourself as an opponent, and you effectively extinguish their existence.

3) You’ll change your mind. People hate when you change your mind to a better way of thinking. They’d rather you be a target of ridicule than an example of learning. Don’t expect a gracious reception if you change your mind. Expect your previous thinking to be held over you.

Most people can’t change their mind because they too strongly identify with the opinions they hold. They would rather follow a fantasy road off a cliff than get a new map based on reality. They can’t understand discarding erroneous thought for ideas more in line with facts, evidence and reality.

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