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Understanding Scriptures

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 Blooming Stars

Leading Question

            Leading questions or pseudo questions are asked by persons who already have answers to the questions asked. The questions often begin with a “don’t you know” or “don’t you think”. They might even ask a genuine question giving the impression that they want to know what you think. They are not really interested in your answers. They want to know if you have the same kind of answers as they have. Once they realize that your answers are not the same as theirs, they keep on interrupting before you finish talking to let you know that you do not have the “right” answers. Of course they have the right and the only answers, often based on their understanding or interpretation of scriptures. They are the criterion of truth even though they may not realize this. Without understanding your answers, they may even caricature your answers.

            They are often fundamentalist, self-righteous, and intolerant. They try to impose their views on you often with the good intention of bringing you to the right path. Persons who interrupt constantly are not interested in what you want to say. Instead of listening attentively to what you are saying, they may be preoccupied with how they are going to answer you. They may also interrupt you to let you know what they want to say right away lest they forget what is on their mind when they wait for their turn. Listening attentively means one is able to accurately reflect or summarize what the other person is saying. I am less likely to carry on a serious conversation with someone who is doing multi-tasking (doing more than one thing at the same time) that is not uncommon in these days. A serious conversation requires an ambience of concentration.

            What is the best thing you can do with such persons? First thing to realize is that you are not going to go anywhere in your discourse with such persons. A healthy compromise, highly desirable as it is, may not be possible. A good course of action is to acknowledge the irreconcilable nature of differences at hand, and attempt to agree to disagree in an agreeable way. It may be good to state briefly where you stand on the issue. On your part it may be important to examine and study the issue further, if needed, to acquire the needed knowledge in order to further the discourse. If the issue does not involve important moral or ethical concerns, and if you desire to have a close relationship with the person concerned, accept and love the person for who he/she is. Be accurate in the use of your language to convey only the degree of knowledge or certainty that you have. It is very important that you do not engage the same tactics that you are accusing the other person of. You cannot teach anyone who is not open to learn. Above all, never compromise your principles or conscience for the sake of any relationship.


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