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Being Critical vs Being Humble

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posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:05 PM
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Critical vs. Humble? It sounds like a false choice fallacy.

Critical in a perjorative sense is an adversarial position against whatever doesn't appeal to one's own sensibilities, likes, dislikes, etc. It is not an internally peaceful position. It's one of insecurity and discomfort and likely one of self-loathing. In this state one wishes to convert the world to a zone of complete safety and non-reflection, where nothing they internally find abhorrent about themselves nor anything that connects with personal insecurities is manifest.

Humility as passivity is not really humility but a state of impotence and fear. It is not much different than being critical, but silently so. Humility in this way is indicative of one's sense of having something to lose or not being willing to take any risk by rising to a challenge.

In genuine humility one is capable of discernment and does not automatically accept everything as right or just and will speak out or take action if required, though not rashly nor as a way of merely striking out unprovoked against another. Part of the risk is that others may interpret it as criticality, out the nature described above.

A way to humbly challenge someone without initiating conflict is to put them to the task of having them answer why they would say or do something and simply hold them to a standard of honesty. No over-rehearsed talking points! No dogma! In this way, if successful, they turn their awarness on themselves instead of you as the object. If it won't take, perhaps because they refuse to have any insight or have become increasingly irate, I suppose you should just let them be. Some just aren't ready and for that time are beyond reaching. Simply treat them with compassion.

That's what I've learned in a nutshell and you are free to attack it if you so desire...or say nothing at all. Why do you really ask this?





posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:11 PM
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I have found that being critical and then discovering after the fact that I have been misguided or wrong in my beliefs and voiced opinions is, ironically, a humbling experience. One works off of the other in a sort of ongoing balancing act that pushes one toward an eventual middle ground.

I think that whichever one you primarily are, you end up learning from the other.



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:16 PM
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The very fact that you made this thread asking this precise question is evidence enough that you are both humble (willing to question self) and critical (willing to question others). No Dilemma here, case closed.



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:21 PM
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A way to humbly challenge someone without initiating conflict is to put them to the task of having them answer why they would say or do something and simply hold them to a standard of honesty. No over-rehearsed talking points! No dogma! In this way, if successful, they turn their awarness on themselves instead of you as the object. If it won't take, perhaps because they refuse to have any insight or have become increasingly irate, I suppose you should just let them be. Some just aren't ready and for that time are beyond reaching. Simply treat them with compassion.


I think this is where the slippery slope begins. If you humbly challenge somebody you are still engaging in some act of criticality. Even a simple, "Why" can incite conflict, because you are forcing them to justify their position. Instead what if you encouraged them to just tell you more about their position without criticising it? What do we have to gain anyway from being critical of them? A sense of being right?

I think one of most majors flaws in the human mind is this obsession to be right. More often than not we end up in disputes when we are not actually right on self-reflection.

Obviously I can see that being critical also has arguments in favour of it. If you see something that is false, you should challenge it. I do have a problem with this because I am quick to challenge what I think is false, that does not agree with my soul or reason. However, most of the time when I do this it only assures me of my righteousness and does nothing to change the status quo with the other, who will continue to maintain their position nonetheless.

So it seems like to me we only do it because we want to feel right within ourselves. Is this a strength or a fundamental weakness of the human mind?



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:25 PM
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Reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


IMHO I don't think criticality need be adversarial as it simply means weighing and comparing and contrasting ideas in relation to each other and with the available "facts" to me. But I do accept very little as unalterable "fact". To start. But langauge is high subjective after all.


 
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posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:37 PM
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Reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


And false security is always delusion IMHO. Better to let nothing rest. To be ever striving for the "truth" by evaluating and re-evaluating EVERY BELIEF or scrap of so called "knowledge". To do otherwise is to fall into delusion, albeit you could via chance be correct. But that is just me and I'd never tell anyone else how to live their life except as admittingly highly subjective and failable advice.


 
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posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 02:52 PM
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If criticism is approached with mutual respect and open mindedness conflict would not occur. Problem is especially sites like this alot if not most want complimentary discourse. And/or to shove their beliefs down everyone else's throat. And/or the conflict either brings about. Once again, IMHO.


 
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posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 03:01 PM
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reply to post by Indigo_Child
 


One can tailor the question to the situation of course. Without questioning, is it really possible get them to tell more, truthfully? Do they them tell me more by encouraging them, by overt disagreement, to use their habitual rationalizations? What is it about this passive stepping up that is an act of criticality rather than curiosity especially in relation to things that are horribly misguided?

It is potentially more telling and less overtly confrontational than simply telling them what you think and why, why they think what they do and what they're like. Still, I see you agree there is a risk of a conflagration. You can't please everyone. Being idyllic can render you utterly inert or destructive.

Say for instance, one states that they say they hate minority X. Is this something that should go unquestioned or unchallenged? Would it be better to get to the real reason? Should I just tell them they're wrong and a bigot in so many words, perhaps even with evidence? What about their long-ago acquired skin against the usual approaches?

As just one example, I have seen this work where when the person was questioned, the result was rather illuminating. This person finally realized the attitude wasn't really their own but the unquestioned acceptance of the suggestions of the achoholic and abusive father. The person didn't really in their heart hate the person that was different than they. The person wasn't immediately relieved of all their discomfort but their awareness increased in the process. In now being aware enough of whom to forgive, that forgiveness speads far and wide as the years progress.



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 03:18 PM
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Originally posted by Watcher-In-The-Shadows
Reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


And false security is always delusion IMHO. Better to let nothing rest. To be ever striving for the "truth" by evaluating and re-evaluating EVERY BELIEF or scrap of so called "knowledge". To do otherwise is to fall into delusion, albeit you could via chance be correct. But that is just me and I'd never tell anyone else how to live their life except as admittingly highly subjective and failable advice.


As I see it, only I can make that choice personally, for myself. I cannot force anyone to evaluate and reevaluate anything. But, to attack the defenses directly, wishing to have an effect or get to the softer interior, is likely prepared for and well-learned.

But then, sometimes I prefer to be utterly blunt, if I think it's the most suitable way. My guess could be incorrect. I don't tend to lose any sleep over it.



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 03:29 PM
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reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


In the case of a bigot or racist who hates a certain minority. I think you will find in most cases when you engage with these people, no amount of reason can convince them otherwise. You will end up in a pointless debate and a situation of conflict which leads to nothing fruitful in the end. On the other hand, if you inquire into their beliefs by showing a genuine openness and sincerity to understand why they think the way they do, you will come out of the exchange with a lot more knowledge and understanding. This sort of ethnographic approach can lead to much greater understanding about the other than debating with them.

Have you seen Avatar? In the film Jake who takes on the avatar body and goes and mingles with the Navi. The Navi tell him that others have tried to mingle with them but their attempts have failed because they are cups that are already full in which you cannot pour anything more. Jake on the other hand is completely empty, humble and open and they can actually teach him their ways. The difference in Jakes approach as compared to the other humans, is while they were critical, he was completely humble, non judgemental, evincing a sincere interest in the Navi.

Perhaps, there is a message here for all of us. We should try to be humble to each other rather than critical of each other. Even with views we disagree with.

I have been reading the RA material recently, fascinating reading even if you do not believe the RA actually exist. The RA says that they respect the free will of people and this is why they will not offer any proofs of their existence or spiritual truths, though they have the power to do that. They allude that people who are ready for higher truths will automatically gravitate to them. There is no need to convince them. Maybe, there is a nugget of wisdom in this approach. Those of us who are more spiritually enlightened than others, who have experience of higher truths, do not have to convince others or share it with others. We should just remain silent with those who are not ready.(In esoteric order this known as the hermetic silence) and sincerely hear what they have to say to learn about them. Is this humility or impotence in your opinion?



posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 03:45 PM
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Reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


Nor should you, lose sleep over it I mean. Unless you are like many whom enjoy parading around telling everyone else how right they think they are. In which my challenge is always the same, prove it.


 
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posted on Dec, 25 2009 @ 03:48 PM
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Originally posted by Indigo_Child
reply to post by EnlightenUp
 


Is this humility or impotence in your opinion?



I haven't seen Avatar. I have a feeling at some point I will. If I don't initiate the process it sounds like something about which my girlfriend will say, "I want you to sit down and watch this and tell me everything you think of." (Yeah, she does that to me alot and I to her.)

It sounds more interesting the more little tidbits I read around here.

Perhaps we're sort on the same wavelength with our own expressive quirks. What your're saying sounds in your own words much like what I'm trying to express but perhaps better said. Expression fail for me...haha.

And, no, that isn't impotence. One could not have a lucid opinon of ways they do not yet know. They would only be judged relative to one's own preexisting biases. If the ways were not essentially peaceful and compassionate, I might eventually still question them accordingly but at least from a position of lesser ignorance.



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