Discussing sensitive topics in a constructive way helps human beings to grow both as individuals, and as a civilisation
Conversation between people remains one of the most effective - but underestimated - means by which human beings can develop and enrich their intellect, morals, and work towards improving society. In recent years, however, our society has developed a growing trend of indignation, especially among young people, and this is causing increasing difficulty in being able to constructively discuss certain topics, such as race, religion, gender issues, social injustices, development of artificial intelligence, and genetic modification.
The popular saying "damned if you do, damned if you don’t", is extremely fitting in this case, so much so that many people simply prefer to avoid talking about certain topics all together. The damage caused by this attitude, however, is twofold: on the one hand, we tend to accept what we hear from other people, without any critical reflection, and very often, their comments are biased, and steeped in aggression. On the other hand, we wrongly take the stance of not getting involved in discussions with others on topics which are actually important for our development as human beings. Reality is not like a university campus, divided into different study subjects. To fully understand it, and try to find a solution to the problems we face as individuals, we need to use skills from a variety of disciplines. The management of the Covid-19 pandemic is an example of how politics, science, philosophy, religion, and economics have had to interact and work together to seek a common solution that can be embraced by all.
According to Daniel Kahneman, even small talk and gossip can be useful in teaching people to observe their surrounding environment with a more critical eye. The important thing, however, is to improve the quality of this chatter and avoid negative gossip, thereby striving for more useful and inspiring conversations. As a result, much of the criticism often levelled at social media, where conversations of questionable quality dominate, would also see a sharp decline.
The key ideas of "Making Sense"
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