On the telly, a group of British creationists was taken on a road trip across America, having their beliefs challenged. At one point, they saw the Grand Canyon, and said it was laid down in the Flood. Dialogue between world-views does not happen, generally: blog debates are something like this:
and however much they repeat these steps, with whatever expressions of derision and contempt, both go away thinking they have won. Perhaps they have sharpened their own understanding of their own position, and so go away more solidly in their own camp. It is the same if I debate with people who think Trans is Wrong, or that my religion must involve silly beliefs, however much I say it is about practice and attitude. We talk to ourselves.
A “Side B Christian”, who thinks gay people should be celibate, but does not want gay cure therapy, might be more able to persuade others against gay cure therapy than I could. Because they are so similar, they might listen to nuances of difference.
I might tentatively enquire what they get out of the world-view. The TERF is transphobic, having a disgust reaction to trans people, and she gets validation: her dislike is rational, and Feminist. Those who do not share it need consciousness-raising. On no account should her phobia be challenged. One holds an irrational world-view because it achieves something good in ones eyes. But this must not be acknowledged: I must assert that my world-view is rational, or else I will lose that good thing.
Here is the Kingdom of Heaven. First clutching my filthy rags about me, which do not clothe me at all, I suddenly throw them away to stand naked and unafraid.
My world view is different from what I inherited, and the same. That fight with the Director of Education which led my father to be forced into early retirement- I see it, and say, “Completely ridiculous! Why did you have to stick your heels in?” And I can see myself in the same self-harming fight. In different circumstances I have been in it.
My parents kept themselves to themselves. I have had serious friendships, but I do not form them easily. I think of “Auntie” Bess and my mother, who kept in touch though Bess stayed in Falkirk, and see similarities. After my parents retired they visited Malta for six weeks with SAGA holidays, met two couples from Berkshire and Kent respectively, stayed in touch, and spent weeks in each others’ houses. It felt like a wonderful opening, like new freedom and flowering.
Question. What do I want, but take no action to get, because I imagine I have it?
There may be other ways into this.