It's always such a hot topic, like politics. If you are IMO attached to your ideas it is very hard to be open-minded. I have always loved a good debate, because I don't have to be right. When you have to be RIGHT, and stoke your ego, the field of vision narrows.
I read a quote recently that said, "Merely having an open mind is nothing; the object of opening a mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid."
If you don't have to be right, why debate? If you do not believe in what you are sharing why then should I even listen to you? You are not arguing truth you are arguing opinion. I am not interested in your opinion but in the truth. If you dont hold that your view is the truth and you dont have to be right then there is no foundation for you to hold to, let alone me listen to.
An opinion is subjective, I am looking for the truth, by definition is absolute. It's not that I have to be right, it is by definition that I am right. A truth and a lie, which is right? Well of course the truth is. You may argue neither is right, inwhich case I can say that your world view has no solid foundation. If you believe one thing to be true and another believes something else to be true, then you cant argue with him because in your world view truth is subjective.
If truth is subjective you have no reason to debate because according to such a view everyone is right. At that starting point, you have lost the right to debate.
I had a similar pseudo conversation with my nephew on Facebook the other day. He posted something about matadors and bullfighting and how some people see it as murder, but he just sees it as an okay cultural variation because he has an open mind and can see it from their perspective. I told him to use his open mind to imagine himself in the bull's place and get back to me. Absolutes and moral relativism, where would we be without them? An effective debater has to be able to debate every side of any argument or issue and win, the ultimate "truth" of the argument or issue be damned. There's an absolute for ya.
Absolutes are true for all people, everywhere, at all times. That's the nature of absolutes. Telling someone s/he's lost the right to debate doesn't make it true. You and I don't have that power...unless rights are bestowed by man.
A couple of my favorite quotes:
“It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out.” Carl Sagan?
"A mind all logic is like a knife all blade. It makes the hand bleed that uses it." Rabindranath Tagore
Here's a fun one:http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ ... rrier.html
Right is just another word for nothing left to do.