Test your beliefs by seeking out other viewpoints



July 24, 2019 - 10:30 AM

The Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard famously observed that if everyone is a Lutheran then no one is a Lutheran. What he meant is that if you’re born into a culture in which everybody has a similar worldview, you don’t have an opportunity to develop genuine belief because your convictions are not subject to scrutiny.

Put another way, if you don’t talk to people who hold different views, you will not know what they believe, and you won’t even know what you believe. Having conversations with people who hold beliefs different from yours affords you the opportunity to reflect — and only then can you evaluate whether your beliefs hold true.

Immigration. Abortion. Gun control. The seemingly impossible issue du jour is irrelevant. What is relevant: To justify your confidence you must sincerely engage people who have solid arguments against your position.

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