On The Topic of “The Debate”

So I had this dream. I was arguing with a religious person as we were climbing a vine hanging over a lake of water. Every time one of us would make a point to support a claim or refute the other’s claim, we would climb up the vine a little. After doing this for some time I realized that there was no top to the vine we were climbing and no end to the debate we were having. I looked down and saw we were both quite high over the water.

The thought of continuing on with the debate forever made me weary. So weary I didn’t fear the water. I let go of the vine and fell headlong into the drink. As I came into contact with the water, I realized I wasn’t falling, I was rising. I came out of the water and floated above it, breathing fresh air in the sunshine.

As I floated there above the water I could see the vine sinking out of sight with the other man still clinging to it. Still climbing downwards. If only he could not fear the water.


8 responses to “On The Topic of “The Debate”

  1. If you’re tired of “debating”, try having a genuine discussion on this topic with someone.


  2. I completely understand this. I guess it boils down to the person you are debating. Some of them will honestly engage, and others never will.

    This is why I have my own blog. I am able to write down my thoughts on my terms. Comments are welcome, and I will change my mind and retract something if I agree that I made an error.

    I think the fresh air and sunshine comes from the freedom to think, as opposed to those who have been told what to think.

  3. Thanks for the suggestion, but that is nearly impossible. I can talk to other like minded people, but that will only shore up the walls of a shared world-view. How does one see things in a new way there?
    On the other hand, every time I talk to a religious or spiritual person they tend to yet upset and either shut down or rail against my point of view.

  4. I can’t recall one religious person who honesty engaged in a debate past the first bit of logic that contradicted their irrational beliefs.

    I thought that the fresh air and sunshine symbolized freedom from needing to be right. Being a person brought up in the Church I do have a problem there, with needing to be right all the time. If I am right I can’t prove it with any amount of logic or reason. Because the people I try to convince did not use logic and reason to get to where they now stand. They use un-logic and unreason (AKA faith) to hold their ground.
    But then you may be right, they could symbolize the freedom to think, it is just a dream after all. Maybe it doesn’t mean anything.

  5. I understand it’s very difficult to have a conversation with someone who believes different than you. My personal experience is that it’s hard for anyone not to get emotional about these things, since we believe them so deeply. But once you begin arguing with emotion instead of reason, you begin raising your voice, repeating yourself, and you stop listening.

    What jetson said below is true. Blogs are better for this sort of thing, because we’re not limited to the 420 characters of facebook status or the 140 of twitter updates. We are free to use however many words we need to in order to express ourselves and intelligently explain our positions.

    That being said, perhaps focus on one specific point of disagreement, rather than jumping through every single bullet point you can think of to support your belief. I understand that these points are intertwined and mutually supportive of a person’s worldview, but they are still seperate points.

    For example, if you have an issue with Biblical interpretation versus scientific proof, you probably dont need to bring up the pagan origins of Christmas or why you believe Jesus never existed.

    This so called “shotgun approach” works well when you’re trying to be arrogant and prove yourself “superior” to those who cannot answer everything you throw at them, but does absolutely nothing to further intelligent discussion.


  6. jj – You make a good point, with facebook I tend to post status updates on whatever it is I an thinking about. So I’m not really shotgunning, just thinking of several different things. But then, maybe I am using the shotgun approach with out even noticing it.
    I do not wish to look arrogant or superior. I just see so many people with their brains in neutral and feel I need to do something to help them.

  7. What an interesting dream… “If only he could not fear the water.” That line was striking to me. Nice blog

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