Welcome criticism

By Maulana Wahiduddin Khan | ST Blog, Aug 9, 2016

Generally, no one likes to be criticised. Some people go to the extreme of abhorring any criticism. But that is an unhealthy response, for criticism and dissent are positive elements in the lives of individuals and for societies. Criticism is part of intellectual exchange.

When you discuss an issue with someone without any reservation, what you have to say is likely to take the form of criticism. In any critical process, there are two people: one who criticises and one who is the object of criticism. The former may expound a divergent viewpoint in a frank and open manner, and this encourages the latter to discover a new aspect of the subject under discussion. So, criticism is good for both persons concerned.

Criticism is a process rather than an end. It entails discussion, which leads to intellectual development. Indeed, through the process of criticism, we embark on an intellectual journey trying to find answers to our questions. Criticism opens the closed doors of the mind, and enhances thinking capacity. As such, criticism is always good. Critical thinking is constructive thinking. Creative thinkers are always able to discover new things, but creative thinking cannot be developed without critical thinking.

Accept criticism with a tranquil mind and your will soon discover that your critic was an intellectual enabler. No one, except your critic, can decondition your mind. Everyone must, therefore, welcome the critic. There is a saying, ‘One who criticises you is better than one who praises you.’