TED Conversations

Carter Harkins

Chief Storyteller, Harkins Creative

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Is there an indispensable person or group in your life with whom you frequently disagree? How has this made you a better person?

The culture wars rage on every day in the news and in online comment threads. We hurl invective and criticism without regard for the fact that most of this kind of "discourse" actually only causes each of us to become further entrenched in our ideas and beliefs. At worst it can push us into even more extreme positions, believing that the emotion we feel justifies our deeper schisms.

Maybe you have been lucky enough to have a person or group who has taught you the value of disagreement in the presence of real engagement and commitment to understanding. If so, I hope you'll share how this kind of interaction has strengthened, sharpened and equipped you to argue and disagree in world-changing ways, in ways that foster community and overcome ignorance (your own, as well as the other's).


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    Aug 18 2012: Yes, continuosly. Once upon a time in my life, I used to feel as direct attacks most of the opinions which were confronted to these of mine. But time has gone by, and I've learned the precious worth of the faced up opinions. When I look at some of my friends, or relatives or fellows, that they not usually have people with strong different opinions, I can feel how these oeople have not had the opportunity to value the other's mindings and to expose these of themselves to other's judgement. Sometimes is a hard way, but In my opinion, it always produces benefits for all.

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