I am a very frazzled speaker and I wish that I was not. When confronted with a controversial topic I tend to stammer, lose my train of thought, and run in circles with my words. I am very aware of it when it happens, but cannot stop it when it does. There’s a weird wave that comes over me; a type of fear or discomfort, that hinders me from relaying my words in the same eloquence that I speak with in my mind or on the occasional paper. I want to simply spit out my views and allow them to simmer over the audience in a thought provoking manner, but I know better. With controversial topics come conflicting views, and with conflicting views come the people who believe them, the people who are in conflict with me. It is those people that I fear, those people who see me as only potential convert, one that, with time, will help fight their battles for them. I suppose you can categorize the calmness of my body as a confrontational fleer. Whenever faced with a situation that reeks of change and conflict she runs away screaming. I would love to prove my point, make them understand that I have actual, pliable knowledge behind my stance, but Fleer just wants to flee. She already knows that the other has no interest in listening to me and that the other’s first move will be to cut me off and frazzle me to the point of incoherency. And the other part of me knows that she is right. As soon as the conflict becomes an argument and the argument turns into heartfelt stance my fleer turns her foot toward the door. When it comes to the point where my fleer’s prophecy has been fulfilled and I am being completely drowned by the other’s words and rudeness and my inability to get more than a sentence in at a time visibly angers me, my fleer has already left the premises and taken my coherency and knowledge of the subject with her. At that time, the rest of me is left to be all alone by herself flailing around in an inundation of misused words and visible frustration.
It happened just this morning, actually. I was confronted with the issue of gay marriage, one of the bumpiest controversies today. If I were attempting to look good, honestly I would have kept my mouth shut, I am aware of the swiftness of Fleer. I know how fast she leaves me and how willing she is to do so. But that was not my intention. I wanted to be heard! Understood! I wasn’t asking for conversion. I couldn’t care less about the other’s views. I simply wanted mine to be considered, that’s all. But no. The other was as rude as my fleer had warned me she would be and my fleer ran so fast I never even saw her go and FWOOP, there went my coherency. I couldn’t prove my point, but thankfully a friend of mine saw my struggle and conveyed exactly what I was attempting to in a calm and completely intelligible manner and I was overcome with relief.
But I would like to do that for myself. I would like to maintain the calm I experience expressing my feelings on what society deems to be trivial matters. I would like to debate an issue without feeling swallowed and abandoned on a subject I truly know a lot about. I suppose that always goes back to confidence. How comfortable I am with myself, how much I actually believe what I’m saying.
But I think that’s the problem.
Confidence in your beliefs is so hard to stand by. I may hold a certain belief and still have conflicting views on a closely related topic. The problem is it’s not meant to be debated. All your beliefs can’t completely agree with each other. There’s bound to be conflict somewhere and I’m always aware of this. What if they find that gaping hole that lies in my beliefs, the logic that is entirely whole except for that small, tiny snag? What then? Does your belief system fail? Are you forced to change from something you completely believe to something that just allows that other conflicting belief to coexist? And then what happens when error is found in that system as well? The search for completeness just goes on…
I suppose the only way to counter this is to understand your own fallibility and argue your point anyway. Ignore the snags and attempt to cover them so they can’t be picked at by others, or yourself.
In a way this seems dishonest. Like you’re keeping something from the world that could potentially make it better.
But is it deception? Or is it simply protecting your own beliefs and values? Is it selfish to allow yourself to live in the presence of dishonesty? To ignore it? To lie to yourself?
I don’t know. I don’t think it can be answered. Which is why it probably shouldn’t be debated… but that’s a completely different argument.