TED Conversations

Jordan Reeves

TED-Ed Community Manager, TED Conferences


This conversation is closed.

What's one lesson you find super compelling?

If you could put a megaphone to the ears of the world for just 5 mintues, what's the one lesson you would teach. It doesn't have to be serious, but it can be. It doesn't have to be about math, science, literature, or history, but it can be. It just needs to capture the minds of your audience.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Apr 20 2012: Language is the most powerful, most available, yet most commonly misused and abused tool at our disposal. We don't need to shout, to broadcast, or to announce. We need to communicate and to interact; both are actions that involve speaking (and I don't mean just verbally) as well as listening (and I don't just mean with our ears). Nothing is known until it is known through language, even if it is known only unto ourselves.
    • Apr 20 2012: Communication! Exactly, I agree with you completely. Communication is cause of most, if not all, problems and can as well be solution for all of those.
      • thumb
        Apr 21 2012: I feel most people think of communication as becoming too overly politically correct, but I don't feel that it is so bad.

        What are your thoughts about a world of absolute political correctness?
        • Apr 21 2012: We live in a weird time. My niece gets trophies for losing at sports. We're afraid of conflict. Everybody wins all the time. She has trouble understanding that she can't always win. Now this isn't probably the best anecdote to demonstrate, but what I'm trying to say is that I think that evades a reality that requires that we learn how to embrace conflict. That isn't to say we should go around spouting racial slurs or bad language, but we should also attempt to confront and effectively engage with language that is repressive, oppressive, and downright hurtful. Political correctness doesn't correct-- it's an evasive maneuver that doesn't, in the long run, solve problems. The only way to overcome offensive language is to understand where it comes from and start a dialogue. What happens can be frightening and troublesome, but if we work at it, I truly believe it can lead to respect if not an understanding.
        • Apr 21 2012: In this case I didn't think of political correctness, not even close. Actually I think those terms are not so much related at all. These days being politically correct often means exactly the opposite - to bite your tongue, not to say something unless you can direct it to both sides.
          When I say communication, I assume open, direct and honest discussion, freedom of speech without fear, but with the idea of politeness and others' feelings, I assume will to listen and hear, and finally open mind and humility to admit and adjust when we are shown to be wrong.
        • Apr 22 2012: I'm kinda partial to the phrase "Many in society have forgotten how to *disagree* without being *disagreeable*."

          For those that disagree :), just check Internet blogs for the amount of trolling that goes on - even when an idea warrants merit, the manner in which it's presented is SO distasteful that the opportunity to influence is lost.

          "Who you are speaks so loudly, I can't hear what you're saying." - Emerson
    • Apr 21 2012: Beyond that Cara, he words we choose are powerful creators of our reality.
      • thumb
        Apr 23 2012: I agree Cara, Buga, Derek, DW and Donna!
        The words we speak and the way in which we communicate (speak and listen) are a big contributing factor to the reality we want to create in our life experience. The manner in which we present ourselves with our communication is so very important:>)

        You ask..."What are your thoughts about a world of absolute political correctness?"

        Personally, it feels like a catch phrase that has so many different meanings, it has lost meaning for me...just my own thought/feeling:>)
    • W T 100+

      • +1
      Apr 21 2012: And, even when we think we think we understand another person, we really don't.

      There is no way of knowing another human's innermost thoughts and feelings.

      We only know what they wish to reveal to us.

      It is hard when you are an introvert, and cannot be around people who are poor communicators. I have that problem. When people put on an act in front of me, and measure their words to be proper, I hesitate to be around them......they make me uncomfortable. That is precisely when I need empathy, and to give them the benefit of the doubt.............I am constantly working on this side of my personality.

      Hence the appropriate phrase: "The art of conversation".

      Thank you Cara for your lovely lesson.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.