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   Sometimes the best information comes from the other side.

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   Many of us have lost our way in talking to each other.

 

   Especially when we seriously disagree.

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   Here’s what a highly regarded atheist philospher,

 

   Daniel Dennett¹ has to say:

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But for that you’ll have to go through the DOOR.

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   [MORE]

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      Dennett summarizes the rules of legendary social psychologist and game theorist Anatol Rapoport, known for his tit-for-tat strategy of game theory, this way:

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   (1)  You should attempt to re-express your target’s position so clearly, vividly, and fairly that your target says, “Thanks, I wish I’d thought of putting it that way.”

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   (2)  You should list any points of agreement (especially if they are not matters of general or widespread agreement).

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   (3)  You should mention anything you have learned from your target.

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   (4)  Only then are you permitted to say so much as a word of rebuttal or criticism.

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  Most of us, especially many Christians, should consider these words.

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   ¹ Taken from Brain Pickings on getpocket.com (Mar. 28 2014) as presented by Maria Popova. Dennett maintained, for example, that the ability to discern intent in fellow humans led people to ascribe intent where none was actually evident, as in the case of creationism. Dennett lectured and debated widely on the subject; a 2009 discussion with Christian philosopher Alvin Plantinga was published as Science and Religion: Are They Compatible? (2011). His alignment with the views of atheist activists Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and Sam Harris led Hitchens to dub their cohort “the Four Horsemen of the Counter-Apocalypse.” Such associations should in no way be dismissed when such folks speak wise words.