Mr. Rogers Would Be Proud
I learned a new word yesterday that I should've known a long time ago as I practice it repeatedly on this blog. The word is dialectic and I believe I am generally a person who is dialectic in forming many of my own views. It's actually more than an adjective, it's a process used mainly in philosophy, a process to arrive at a truth.
A socratic version of the dialectic formed when Socrates confronted someone for a debate on a topic that he pretended to know nothing about. During the discussion he would ask enough questions the person couldn't properly answer that Socrates would eventually get them to doubt their own belief in the matter. I've always called this playing Devil's Advocate, taking the opposite view to work your way towards the truth but apparently that is also the essence of using the dialectic.
I came across the word while reading an essay on the religious symbolism that can be found in the Matrix movie series. The essays are titled The Passion of Neo. In it, the author surmises that Neo was the symbol of the dialectic, being the synthesis of two opposing groups: the slavemaster machines and the free people of Zion. The goal of both was to annihilate each other but Neo, whose name means new found a third solution, a compromise that could provide a peaceful existence to both.
I won't go into all of the themes he discusses in the essay, he has written a book on the subject but I encourage you to it check out and read detailed insight into the symbolism that can be found in the Matrix series. It is very good and very interesting if you enjoyed the trilogy.
So I use the dialectic in my writings to try and convince people that ideas they have may not be truth. I encourage questioning, self introspection, taking an alternate view of something to find out what you believe in should be something you can believe in or if they're just accepting someone else's view (a parent, friend, spouse). I don't see anything wrong with doubt, in fact I encourage it. I titled this blog sensing samsara because I wanted a theme of something that would make you think. Samsara is the trials and tribulations in life and if you can sense the truth of these challenges, recognize the common pitfalls of human behavior, you can't help but become a better person.