We’ve lost sight of the most important rule in debating science
Ethan Siegel
23324

Adi Shankaracharya proposed the method of purva paksha for debating and defeated Jains in India around 12th century.

The method of debate is the traditional dharmic approach to rival schools. It is a dialectical approach, taking a thesis by an opponent (’purva pakshin’) and then providing its rebuttal (’khandana’) so as to establish the protagonist’s views (’siddhanta’). The purva paksha tradition required any debater first to argue from the perspective of his opponent in order to test the validity of his understanding of the opposing position, and from there to realize his own shortcomings. Only after perfecting his understanding of opposing views would he be qualified to refute them. Such debates encourage individuals to maintain flexibility of perspective and honesty rather than seek victory egotistically.In this way, the dialectical process ensures a genuine and far-reaching shift in the individual