Sunday, February 22, 2009


I am posting this quote because I have been guilty of blunt assertions many times which got me into trouble and I lost some good friends. I hope this quote will help me change. You may find it useful too!

“I made it a rule to forbear all direct contradiction to the sentiments of others and all positive assertions of my own. I even forbid myself the use of every word or expression in the language which imported a fixed opinion such as “certainly, “ “undoubtedly” etc. and I adopted instead of them, “I conceive,” “ I apprehend,” or “I imagine,” or “it appears to me at present.”

When another asserted something that I thought an error, I denied myself the pleasure of contradicting him abruptly and of showing immediately some absurdity in his proposition; and in answering I began by observing that in certain cases or circumstances his opinion would be right, but in the present case there appeared or seemed to be some difference etc.

I soon found the advantage of this change in my manner; the conversation I engaged in went on more pleasantly. The modest way in which I proposed my opinions procures them a readier reception and less contradictions.”



SkyJuice said...

Hi Joseph,

Thanks for posting the quote. It'd help us to be a better communicator.

Have a good week! :-)

Maria said...

Sometimes I am blunt, when I'm angry at somebody. I am not very good at expressing directly what annoys me and so I often get cynical.
Sometimes I try to used expressions as the ones you mentioned, to say "sometimes", "it seems"..., but for me this is not easy at all :(

manivannan said...

Many thanks for sharing those lines sir. I too think it's a nice way to express our opinions. And the photos are really wonderful!

Especially, I loved the coconut tree and sky. Both are Awesome!

Have a wonderful day ahead!

FCB said...

Hi Joseph,
Great quote by a great author.
I have had the same experience of losing friends because of my blunt assertions as well. I'm still working on this, and why we find pleasure in contradicting is a mystery woven deep in our egos.
But.....we press on.
God bless,

Femin Susan said...

so sad....hope you both join together soon.

Maria said...

Hahaha, Joseph, please don't eat cyclamen, they are beautiful but: Cyclamen species are poisonous!!! :)
Here is more information about the flowers if you are interested:
Flamingos: some of them have pink wings and peaks and legs. I think it depends on the food they eat. And teir long necks or something about them reminds me of the cyclamen :)))
Have a nice week!

Amrita said...

Josephji your photos and quote is excellent.

That is an antique clock, good no one stole or vandalized it.

Ben Franklin was a wise guy.

Mel said...

I love this quote, and the photos! I've tried to live out this principle in my day to day, face to face conversations with other people. And it does help our conversations go far more pleasantly when we don't dogmatically assert that everything we believe is 100% correct, because we know, of course, that it is not. Thanks for sharing this! :)

JM said...

Great quote!
Just love the 3rd photo, beautiful palm tree perspective, Joseph!

Leo said...

Sometimes it is good to be blunt -- and sometimes to just say "uh huh" and go on. As I get older, I am more inclined to just say "uh huh" and go on.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes I am very blunt. At times it "pops out" but at others I have much more control, but choose to be blunt anyway-then again at other times, I very much hold back. My goal is never to hurt the other person, but I am sure there have been times I have. I am an opinionated person, but not totally married to my opinions. If you give me something truly to think about I will, and sometimes I change my mind. Overall, I am still very opinionated though.
These are some fantastic pictures.

Danielle&Hannah said...

Hi there Joseph,

I have been away lately... there shall be an update for that somewhere soon...
Beyond that, I like your post. I have to agree that sometimes I am blunt also. I think that this happens when someone is insincere with me. I found myself relating to a particular scripture lately:
Isaiah 6. In verse 5, he said, "Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, ......
This reminds me I am just human and how sinful my nature is. It is a privilege to see our own 'blemishes' and have the humbleness to accept we are not perfect.

Pray that you and your family are well :-)