Arguing! Arguing!

“Arguing! Arguing!” New Era, Nov. 1971, 46

Arguing! Arguing!

“The Spoken Word” from Temple Square, presented over KSL and the Columbia Broadcasting System August 1, 1971. © 1971 by Richard L. Evans.

One of the most fruitless, irritating wastes in the world is arguing—the contentious, endless kind of arguing that is akin to quarreling, and causes feuding in families and among friends, and leaves resentful feeling in homes, in hearts, in businesses and professions, and in all kinds of gatherings in public and private places, and in all relationships of life—and with so little that it ever seems to settle! Oh, how filled the world is with arguments—arguments over theories and opinions; arguments over contracts and commitments; over services performed, prices charged, quality not given, work not done well, satisfaction not received—arguments between husbands and wives, between parents and children; in homes and on the highways—arguments!—arguments! There are some who would rather lose a friend than lose an argument—or so it seems. And what’s it all about, anyway, since arguing doesn’t change truth or facts? But it does foster the spirit of contention. “I wonder,” said David Grayson, “if ever you change human beings with arguments alone: either by peppering them with little sharp facts or by blowing them up with great guns of truth. You scare ’em, but do you change ’em? I wonder if ever you make any real difference in human beings without understanding them and loving them. For when you argue with a man (how much more with a woman), you are somehow trying to pull him down and make him less (and yourself more); but when you try to understand him, … how eager is he then to know the truth you have; and you add to him … you make him more than he was before; and … you yourself become more.”1 Speak your truth quietly. There’s much to be said for the still, small voice, the quiet conviction. Yet so often we go on arguing, and arriving at the opposite of what we really want.