Arguments! are they necessary?
What purpose does argument serve? What are the advantages? It is most debatable. See, it once more comes to square one. The only thing that makes itself so manifest, and if any inference should be made, is that it portrays stupidity. That is what one perceives when one looks at the mood and actions of people who are arguing. Another thing that could be said of people who engage in arguments is that they are not sure of their facts. If one has an object before him which he can perceive either or both with his senses of sight and touch, and someone wants to disprove the existence of such an object, would he engage the person in an argument or simply tell the person that the object exists and leave him to say whatever he wishes. It is foolish to argue over what we are sure of.
All manner of people argue over one topic, subject or the other. For politicians, economists and some other categories of people, the eventual outcome of events may be the presiding judges over their arguments. There in lies the motive behind such arguments. But for philosophers, sectarians (the church and other institutionalized religious organizations), and moralists, their arguments go on for all eternity.
How can one who engages in arguments consider himself a philosopher? Prudence and careful study of a matter is one of the greatest tools of a philosopher. Must one necessarily have promptitude of thought, to be a philosophical genius? The answer is no. Descartes who no doubt was a philosophical giant confessed that he had envied other people’s quickness of thought. Why then should a wise man use the unseemly means of argument to either persuade or intimidate another into accepting opinions which are contrary to those which he holds? Must a man not employ all the antagonism, reason and his other tools to think over an issue before determining whether to accept discard or treat such a matter with indifference? Why then should another insist that he accept views which at that material time do not make sense to him? It is a universal law that people generally do not accept what is beyond their comprehension or personal experience, the freest, unbiased, and open minds, included. Contravening this law would inevitably lead to dogma and fanaticism. A philosopher should then state his ‘truth” and let others assimilate them according to the limitations of their intellect, imagination and experiences.
Worthy of mention is the case of sectarians. It would be an understatement to say that these categories of men argue. A more proper word for their actions would be dissension. They always pity those whose religious convictions hold contrary to theirs. In most cases, calling those poor fool as if God’s kingdom were theirs to give.
In the words of the Buddha, “any supposed “truth” which is not said with love is no truth”. Did Christ not instruct his Apostles to “shake the dust off their feet” when ever they entered a house where their preaching were not welcome.
Where is the selflessness behind these sectarians assailing their opponents’ views? One sees all the animosity, enmity, contempt, hatred and other ignoble qualities behind these bouts of argument. Are these the qualities that the spiritual masters preached to mankind for their redemption? Do these sectarians not employ such base tactics to boost their egos, and for self glorification? What successes have been brought about by these quarrels? When will we start seeing the merger of churches, Islamic groups and other religious organizations? Instead proliferation and the emergence of factions abound every where.