Learning to Love the Opposition

What We Can Gain By Agreeing to Disagree

Most blog conversations, like most real-life conversations, represent like-minded individuals giving each other feedback.  I love it when a friend of mine posts a comment along the lines of “What you said was awesome!”  I can’t get enough of that.  In fact, the blogosphere might have even more affirmation than real life.  Maybe that’s why we love to be plugged in so much.

But what I really can’t get enough of: respectful disagreement expressed with clarity.  No matter what your religio-political-philosophical worldview, I hope you can agree: we can learn a lot from each other, especially when we disagree.

I want your atheism to help me be a better Christian, showing me the ways in which my faith and practice are lacking.  I want to see Buddhist Katy helping Mary Kay to be more Jewish.  I want Michael Moore to help W. to be a better Republican.  Why?  Because if we’re ultimately concerned with pursuing what is true and good, we help each other in that pursuit, even if our conceptions of truth and good differ as much as our ideas for how to live in light of them.

This is probably easier to show than to tell.  In the coming days I will be co-posting the first in a series of “Dialogs with an Atheist,” courtesy of Skeptigator.  I guess he and I got bored with limiting ourselves to in-depth discussion with those who are like-minded.

Every disagreement is a challenge.  Every challenge is an opportunity.  The bottom line: I don’t want to agree with you; I want to understand you.  If I can do that, I will have truly learned something and, I hope, gained a friend.

Advertisements

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: https://faithfool.wordpress.com/2007/07/11/learning-to-love-the-opposition/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

5 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I couldn’t agree more. Very well written. Glad to see someone putting action behind their words also. Good luck on the journey.

  2. It will take more than luck, but thank you!

  3. I agree too. Ironic that comment is in light of what you’ve said.

    I’ve only discovered this blog today after searching “Batman vs Spiderman”, and I must say, you are one intelligent individual.

    Being an agnostic raised by a Jew and a Catholic (Like Seth Cohen in The OC minus the fact that I’m not in the crappiest TV Show in the history of civilisation), I’d love to discuss theology with you.

  4. Many thanks, Dan. I’m glad we’re on the same page about the OC. I’ve got a number of friends with Jewish/Catholic roots and I know that yours is not an easy web to untangle. I live for discussion. Let me know your email address or blog address and we can continue the conversation.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: