The duel that need not be

Shadow and light​;​

​b​oth are right.

Soul and loud

Whole and crowd

​Gifted or sold,

​Flowering or mold​;​

​all must be told.

Yes and no,

​b​oth ​flow



A fallacy is the use of invalid or otherwise faulty reasoning in an argument.

William James said that ” a fallacy occurs when an observer assumes that his or her subjective experience reflects the true nature of an event”.

However many humans base their decisions and logic on their own experience. I do. It seems logical to use your own experience to determine how to interpret something. However such conclusions can be dangerous. A classic example is the flawed reasoning behind Hitler’s subjective views on the Jews, how he concluded that eliminating them was a logical conclusion, based on his own bias and racist views. Such thinking is an example of one of the ways of fallacy, in this case the identification of a false cause and effect. Here are some others:

  1. Band-wagoning : Asserting that everyone agrees. (Implying the mob is right)
  2. Over-simplification : Creating a “false dilemma” (“either-or fallacy”) in which the situation is seen as right or wrong when it is almost always complex.
  3. Card-stacking : Selective use of facts to suggest that one point of view is right.
  4. Misleading comparisons : Making false or misleading statements as if they are true, against, or without relevant evidence,  which is a typical political trick.
  5. Red Herrings : Diverting the argument towards unrelated issues – such as suggesting the person presenting the opposite view has a ‘bad character’.
  6. Insults and inferences : Insulting someone’s character with the implication that this means their point of view is invalid, or unworthy.
  7. Begging the question : Avoiding saying the known facts by assuming the conclusion using circular reasoning – ‘You are guilty, so you must have done it!’

Is there another way to converse without having to imply that there is a right or wrong?

In reality we should be very wary of anyone presenting a view as black and white, because such such dualism is only truly valid in specific mathematical logic, and not appropriate in the world of spirit.

“The dualistic mind is essentially binary, either/or thinking. It knows by comparison, opposition, and differentiation. It uses descriptive words like good/evil, pretty/ugly, smart/stupid, not realizing there may be a hundred degrees between the two ends of each spectrum. Dualistic thinking works well for the sake of simplification and conversation, but not for the sake of truth or the immense subtlety of actual personal experience. Most of us settle for quick and easy answers instead of any deep perception, which we leave to poets, philosophers, and prophets. Yet depth and breadth of perception should be the primary arena for all authentic religion. How else could we possibly search for God?”

Richard Rohr from Falling Upwards