it’s time to be civil (21)

 

#12. Be agreeable. … There are two fundamental abilities to cultivate in order to be agreeable in conversation.

* The ability to consider that you might be wrong.

* The ability to admit that you don’t know.

At any given moment, on any issue, there is the possibility that you might be wrong and someone else might be right. Keep that possibility in mind. Then, if you realize that you are wrong, find the strength to acknowledge it openly. Do so graciously, without harboring resentment toward the person who happens to be right. The same awareness and openness apply to not knowing.

Choosing Civility: The Twenty-Five Rules of Considerate Conduct by P.M. Forni (St. Martin’s Press, 2002); pp. 89-90

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