You won’t BELIEVE what this preacher said…

Nothing! There is no preacher, and he didn’t say anything, but you clicked the link. Headlines like this and the articles that accompany them attract modern audiences, but they actually have the opposite effect than what the writers intended (unless the effect is just to get clicks).

Titles like this that incite strong emotion only change things on the surface. When a storm brews, the surface of the ocean is disturbed, but the depths remain the same. As one author said, “The more we become disturbed, the more real our agitation appears while the invisible escapes us” (Girard: Scapegoat, p.95).

In other words, this form of communication, which is present in debates and conversations as well, distracts us from the real issues. While emotion has its place, we need to dig deep to see the reason behind the emotion – what is at the depths? If we can address the heart of the matter in a discussion instead of focusing on the “clickbait” details, then we can make progress.

If we remain calm and avoid reactionary argumentation, discussions will give birth to natural growth and mutual respect.

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