Distorted Western Adversarial Thinking

Six Thinking Hats
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Gary Wong
Consultant, Canada

Distorted Western Adversarial Thinking

A colleague recently shared a story that Edward De Bono told him at a lunch meeting. Apparently Edward was approached by a lawyer who asked: "How can I use Six Thinking Hats to argue and win my case in court?"
Edward's reply was: "You can't. Six Thinking Hats is for exploration and discovery".

While his response may be considered curt and terse, it reflects Edward's beliefs on how badly Western thinking has been distorted.
In traditional argumenting, or adversarial thinking, each side takes a different position and then seeks to attack the other side. Each side seeks to prove that the other side is wrong. This is the type of thinking established by the Greek gang of three (Socrates, Plato and Aristotle) two thousand four hundred years ago. Adversarial thinking completely lacks a constructive, creative or design element. It was intended only to discover the 'truth' not to build anything."
This is the main reason why Edward De Bono created Six Thinking Hats. We need parallel thinking to overcome adversarial thinking.
Unfortunately, it's easier said than done. Our legal systems are so deeply entrenched in an argument process seeking a win-lose outcome. It has spilled over to our political systems which deliberately create opposing parties that attack each other and defend their righteous cause to win our vote.

What are your thoughts about a court of laws or the parliament using Six Thinking Hats? Would it work? Or is there no hope?

  Victor Aguilan
Professor, Philippines

Using Six Thinking Hats in Court

De Bono Six Thinking Hats is not designed to win a (...)

  Jaap de Jonge
Editor, Netherlands

Using Six Thinking Hats in Court or in Parliament

Thanks Gary for contributing such great topics to (...)

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