• Andrew4Handel
    443
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?

    Why can neither person change the other persons mind?

    Is one side of the argument right or neither? Can both be equally rational and informed?
  • darthbarracuda
    2.7k
    If both of you are reasonable and tolerant, you will go your separate ways and not think too poorly of the other person. Different premises entail different conclusions. I'm free to choose which premises I find most appropriate, and so are you, and there's nothing I can do to change your mind unless you agree to play by the rules of discourse that I agree to play by. All of our beliefs stem from an inner feeling of conviction that some particular thing is the way it seems to be, and the way things seem to be can vary wildly between people.

    One thing that might prove helpful to remember is that people generally don't know why they do things. They contrive reasons after the fact, but fundamentally it is the passions that run the show. This explains why Nietzsche saw philosophy as auto-biography, for the passions determine the presuppositions which determine the conclusions. It's perspectivism - philosophy emerges from a person as a flower does from its stem. It's very much so a growth - almost like an organ - and sometimes it grows cancerous and it has to be cut off.

    Is one side of the argument right or neither? Can both be equally rational and informed?Andrew4Handel

    I think it has less to do with who is right and who is wrong and more to do with who has the better rhetorical skills, who intimidates more, who has the capacity to change minds with symbols, who can dazzle the mind, etc. Pure, unadulterated truth is nowhere to be found.
  • Caldwell
    119
    If both of you are reasonable and tolerant, you will go your separate ways and not think too poorly of the other persondarthbarracuda
    Good.

    Why can neither person change the other persons mind?Andrew4Handel
    Time, not the best argument you have, will change the other person's mind. If, at the moment, you have satisfied yourself with your own argument, then you've done your job. Walk away in peace.
  • Andrew4Handel
    443
    I suppose evidence will eventually prove a point.

    It seems to me if both sides were agnostic then they could agree on uncertainty but that is not usually how it goes. It seems like people enjoy dichotomies and taking sides.

    I feel that I would change my mind if someone gave me a new persuasive argument. But I do feel that the opposing side of the argument sometimes does not accept how firm your own convictions are and really are just being dismissive.
    Certain positions are more trendy or contemporary so that if you are not in a popular paradigm your are more easily dismissed

    .
    One thing that might prove helpful to remember is that people generally don't know why they do things.darthbarracuda

    I am friendly towards the idea of unconscious/subconscious dynamics. But they are hard to tackle because they are not immediately knowable.
    It could be a lengthy diversion from a debates propositions to explore how your temperament and or relationship with your father formed your ideological leanings.

    I think questioning your own beliefs can lead to self-doubt but this self-doubt may be unwarranted if you have a really sound argument.
  • schopenhauer1
    1.8k
    I think it has less to do with who is right and who is wrong and more to do with who has the better rhetorical skills, who intimidates more, who has the capacity to change minds with symbols, who can dazzle the mind, etc. Pure, unadulterated truth is nowhere to be found.darthbarracuda

    Good points :up:
  • tim wood
    643
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?Andrew4Handel
    Where do you want to go? It's hard to go from, absent a there.

    Why can neither person change the other persons mind?
    It's a fundamental rule of the universe; get used to it! The key word here is "change." Had you said educate, or inform, or even beat the s*** out of, these all would be - are - possible. But each requires effort, work. The word "change" conceals that, and which. I recommend the often not-so-easy path of deciding to love your adversary. You may not achieve it, but it ought to inform you as to how to proceed in a sincere and perhaps fruitful way. Btw, is it a girl?

    Is one side of the argument right or neither? Can both be equally rational and informed?
    Think abortion; think sexual identity; think gun control; think equal rights; think the subordination of the individual to the state v. the supremacy of the individual. Boiled down, arguments presented in good faith - and to be sure, not all are - can represent a collision of fundamental beliefs, absolute presuppositions, axioms. These don't resolve easily. Where whole cultures are involved, sometimes a generation or two has to die out. But there's hope for individuals: be open-minded; tell yourself that the ignorant f*** who disagrees with you is an otherwise nice person; and finally, the hard work; seek a synthesis/compromise, if possible. And, you can't win the all!
  • TheMadFool
    2.2k
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?Andrew4Handel

    That's why I think fatigue is a good thing. Eventually we all get tired. The fighting can't go on forever.

    Boredom may be even better.
  • Andrew4Handel
    443
    Arguments can be resolved by force I suppose. I think that is the case with gay rights and abortion legislation. I think force might be better than an impasse. But by force I don't man violence but rather pushing your agenda towards being realised rather than continuing arguing and bickering.

    I know this sounds extreme but I think arguing can just lead to apathy and fatalism.I think some people hide behind progress and force made on their behalf.

    The point is I don't want to be governed by someone else's agenda that I disagree with.But resorting to non verbal action would only happen if it seemed like a necessity.

    For example say people disagree on gods existence I don't think society should favour either position and focus on just one metaphysics or philosophy. I think society should be secular but in a pluralistic way where no one is imposed upon by another's dogmas and children have access to a wide palate of ideas.
  • Sapientia
    5.4k
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?Andrew4Handel

    The nearest gun store?
  • Andrew4Handel
    443

    I have never seen one of those in the UK.

    What is puzzling me about an impasse is why it can't intellectually be resolved.

    Of course I think I am usually in the right and open minded.
  • tim wood
    643
    What is puzzling me about an impasse is why it can't intellectually be resolved.Andrew4Handel

    What do you mean by "resolved"?
  • T Clark
    2.8k


    The answer to the question "How do you get out of an Impasse?"



    Iocaine, i.e. step outside the issue. What they call, in soccer, switching fields.
  • aporiap
    63

    If the issue is value based then try and pinpoint the value differences underlying the disagreement. Then lay out your arguments for your value system and why you think your value grounding is better than the other. Dont dismiss the other other person's points or point validity irregardless of how far fetched they sounds. I definitely think discussion ettiquette matters because it helps foster the discussion and repel defensiveness, ad hominem, thought rigidity and reactivity, things that maintain an impasse.

    If the issue is empirically based or scientific, lay out the evidence. Make sure to question contradictions in the opposing interpretation of the evidence, keeping in mind the discussion ettiquette. And that's it really I think
  • Sapientia
    5.4k
    I think that's it's rarely, if ever, a purely intellectual matter. It's almost inescapably a psychological matter too. If you understand the psychology, then you go some ways to answering your question.
  • Marcus de Brun
    56
    "How do you get out of an Impasse?"

    If it is an impasse, then you cannot get out of it.

    "When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?"

    Somebody gets hurt.

    M
  • Bitter Crank
    5.6k
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?Andrew4Handel

    Why should there be any way out of an impasse? If two people fundamentally disagree, then they disagree and there probably won't be any change in either persons opinion, until the facts of the matter change.

    I hate Trump. You love Trump. We are going to maintain our views until something totally new and unexpected is revealed about Trump (like, he is able to bring peace and justice to the Middle East or orders the Statue of Liberty and the Golden Gate Bridge destroyed).

    Why can neither person change the other persons mind?

    a. Neither of you has a compelling case for your own view
    b. Both of you would rather die than agree with the other one.

    Is one side of the argument right or neither? Can both be equally rational and informed?

    Of course one side or both can be right or wrong and both can be equally rational and informed. Actually, this is probably the state most impasses exist in. So why don't they agree?

    Because people can be obstinate, territorial, egotistical, rigid, and all sorts of other splendid things. "I said the sky is red, and just because you say it is blue is absolutely no reason whatsoever for me to grant that you are right." A synonym for 'impasse' -- deadlock -- gets at the situation better, perhaps. The two sides are locked into their positions.
  • Andrew4Handel
    443
    What do you mean by "resolved"?tim wood

    Find a solution for.

    Or sway the argument predominantly towards one side.
  • ArguingWAristotleTiff
    2.4k
    When two people fundamentally disagree on an issue and will not back down where do you go from there?Andrew4Handel

    At some point you have to agree to disagree. It doesn't imply fault or loss on one side or the other, it just means that as 'thinkers' have to know that the likelihood of us not agreeing, is just as likely as us agreeing.
  • tim wood
    643
    If by "intellectually resolved" you mean it's a problem that has a solution, and that the solution is accessible, then you've merely said the impasse is some kind of problem for which there is a solution - that is, not an impasse in respect of the problem. If it remains an impasse, then it's an impasse for reasons that have nothing to do with the problem.

    If there is an impasse about a problem for which there is no solution (whatever that might be), and both sides agree that there is no solution, then again, no real impasse.

    The question arises, are you using "impasse" correctly. I'm using it here in the qualified sense of a problem that in one case has a solution and in the other has no solution, and that in either case both parties are aware of how it stands.

    But the real meaning of impasse has to do with unresolvable disagreement, which in turn concerns not problems which either do or do not have solutions, but rather process, and progress in that process. Impasse, then, is a creature of persuasion- rhetoric - instead of demonstration.

    An example will help: two different "problems" each illustrating the two kinds of problems in question, and how they differ in respect of "resolution." 1) Proving the Pythagorean theorem; 2) whether with our limited funds it is better to build warships, or build a better harbour defenses, including a wall?

    The first is a problem of the kind that has a definite solution. Further, no persuasion is necessary (although some education might be). It's enough to exhibit passively the proof, so that another can see it - it speaks for itself. One might call this an analytical, or apodeictic, argument. The process of argument is the progression from premises that are always and universally so, to a valid conclusion.

    The second is a problem for which there is no "solution." There is only the weighing of arguments for and against. The process is the supposing - weighing - of hypotheses about things that could either be or not be, those hypotheses found wanting being removed and replaced by others. Persuasion is indeed necessary, because the conclusion called for is an action, not mere acknowledgement of a proof. The skills involved fall under rhetoric - also the name of Aristotle's (dry but eminently readable) treatise on the subject.

    So it remains to determine the kind of problem it is, to see what sort of arguments, on the one hand, or demonstration on the other, is appropriate, and whether the solution is a priori on the one hand, or problematic or assertoric on the other. Or in other words, one has a solution, the other a resolution.

    If you're confused on these issues, join the club; most people are!

    Your quote:
    What is puzzling me about an impasse is why it can't intellectually be resolved.Andrew4Handel
    When the question is problematic, as I noted above, there can be fundamental differences in belief (presuppositions, axioms) that not only argue against resolution, but may make resolution impossible. To move forward in such a case (and the metaphor of motion is precise), there are lots techniques at hand - beyond the scope of this thread, but Aristotle's Rhetoric is a good source.
  • gurugeorge
    276
    They can both be right if they're using different "Frames" (i.e. looking at the situation from different perspectives, with differing central values).

    Or: one of them must be right and one of them wrong if they're both using the same Frame. And that can be for various reasons (mistake in reasoning, misinformed, poor perception, stupid, etc.).

    On a psychological note, I don't think we can expect people to change their mind on the strength of one argument (not unless it's a problem amenable to a slam-dunk solution, which most things people argue about aren't). We're all building a model of the world as we go, and often people have to chew things over and adjust their model in private before they'll openly accept something. That's why it's a bit churlish to press the advantage too much in argument. A bit of light mockery is ok, but, being kind, we have to give people a bit of space to change their minds.
  • Marcus de Brun
    56
    The impasse is no different to a dilemma, if it can be resolved it does not exist.

    The deterministic nature of reality ensures that there are neither dilemmas nor impasses, only the appearance of such. Which is very nice of Determinism, as it gives us something to talk about and lots to do to pass the time.
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