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Mohammad Alzamel

Listening to others can be very difficult - especially when their opinions are so different than ours. Still, how precious is it to us when we hear someone, someone with a different perspective even more so, validate our thoughts and feelings. As a Muslim, I oftentimes face this issue when having discussions with those of various religions. Feminists in particular find it difficult to listen to a Muslim man discuss feminine power in my Middle Eastern society which is oftentimes looked at as "oppressive towards women." I find it is nearly impossible to get them to listen to me. There is a context to our society that is not oftentimes heard by Western culture. While women play a *different* role than men in our society, there is a historical and cultural context that must also be considered. Thus, the only way that this can come to fruition is through listening. I found this TEDTalk, which follows the conversation of two very different individuals with different world views, to be a positive reminder that through dialogue, we are able to open our own minds and the minds of others without having to be harsh or rude. It is a truly valuable tool in our ability to communicate as human beings.

Jessica G

Even though pushing aside our own views is extremely difficult, it is vital that we should push them aside and truly connect with one another. Without the introductions of different ideas, nothing would ever change. I really liked Mohammad's point about communicating is valuable as human beings. Communication is what makes us who we are and shapes the way we think, feel, and act. If we just focus on our own views and push aside other people because we do not like what they believe in or think, then we will never learn new things and will become an aggressor more than a progressor. I have experienced being disliked for what I believe in, not only did it put me down about my beliefs, but it made me realize that the person who disagreed would never learn to communicate effectively if they would not put their beliefs aside and focus on other beliefs. Without understanding and communication, we are no longer a society, but a immense debate tournament.

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