On any given day, over the clattering of silverware and hum of friendly conversation in the cafeteria, groups of students sit over their meals between classes, occasionally taking enough time in between talking points to raise a fork-full of food to their mouths.
It’s not unheard of to overheard acquaintances sparing, gripping with white-knuckled fists onto pillars of thology, philosophy, or any subject humans have sought to wrap our minds around for thousands of years.
When approached with humility, these impromptu daily debates are a beautiful thing.
From the moment we step on campus, discussion about these lofty topics is not just allowed, but encouraged. And despite a reputation for being a mecca of conservative thought and study, we have strong, intelligent students across the spectrum of religious and political ideology, from the boisterous #PragerForce to avid socialists.
Though the conversations become just another step toward finishing our busy days, it is within these conversations that we have an opportunity to nurture our relationships and our minds while we do the same to our bodies.
It is fine to debate, to discuss differing opinions on ideas, with or without reaching shared middle ground. But in order to garner anything from a discussion other than red, sweaty faces, conversations should be approached with kindness and respect, granting others the same validity that we grant ourselves.
Don’t pass up the abundant learning opportunities Hillsdale has to offer outside the classroom. Relinquish the white-knuckled grip without giving up your beliefs and have conversations with people you disagree with.