There are many ways to argue, and there are many ways to win that said argument. When we were little we used to yell and scream at our little siblings, using our seniority as the ultimate ethos. Unfortunately for me, I grew up as an only child. I didn’t have anyone to bully into listening to my claim, and no one to tattle on if I broke something. To make things better (or worse), both of my parents are counselors. I’ve never been grounded, nor have I ever had my TV taken way. Instead, I’ve been forced to sit down and discuss all of my problems with my parents. So you could say that I have some experience with arguing and debating my claim of innocence. One of my favorite ways of persuading my parents that should be declared not guilty was using Dissoi Logoi.
Dissoi Logoi is the idea that for every argument there is a counter argument. My parents, being the highly trained counselors that they are, would use Dissoi Logoi to show me their side of the argument. The would beat their claim into my head until I clearly understood their side. Until I understood that I couldn’t stay the night at someone’s house because it was a school day the next, or that I couldn’t buy a new toy because my mom left her purse in the car. As I matured and grew more accustomed to their use of Dissoi Logoi, I began to use their own technique against them. When I knew that I was in trouble, I would attempt to plot out the argument that they would make against mine, and then find holes in it where the choices that I had made to get me in trouble seemed rational. After an hour or so of debate and many carefully chosen words by both parties, they would begin to sympathize with my side of the argument. I let them see that I understood their argument, giving me logos from within my understanding, and would bring the in the homerun with some well placed words riddled with eloquence. I would win the argument because I could clearly understand and manipulate both sides or the argument.
It is with the previous statement that will make Dissoi Logoi an argumentation style that will be never loose its malice. Dissoi Logoi is ultimate understanding. It’s knowing all sides of an argument so that you may rip them apart and rebuild them to stand even stronger than before. A mastery of Dissoi Logoi was sought after by all philosophers, as they were seeking pure understanding. It enabled them to dive deeper into the mind, coming to new levels of enlightenment. A person who is truly great at debating will be able to debate an issue on both sides. How could one insist that one side of a die is the best side when they haven’t seen the who die? When an arguer can understand the view of their opponent, they can better help them to see the flaws in their own argument. That is why my parents utilized Dissoi Logois so effectively when I was young, and why it worked in my favor as a grew older.
Dissoi Logoi is a tool of argumentation and communication that will always be present and valuable. It is at the root of all debate, learning, and progress. Knowing that there are always two sides to an argument gives the person with the greater subject knowledge the upper hand, and everything that he/she needs in order to support his/her claim. And while it is true that I would often convince my parents of my innocents using Dissoi Logoi, I didn’t win all of the family debates. My father would sometimes pull the “Im your father, and that gives me all of the ethos that I need” card. But I tried not to sulk in my defeats, I mean, I did understand where he was coming from.