An interesting tool to enhance our capacity to think laterally are the six thinking hats.
It challenges the overused adversarial system. In adversarial, we have two sides like in a courtroom. The opponent’s present evidences to counter each other. The tendency if extended can lead to confirmation bias and arrogance of our own viewpoint.there is much focus on rivalry, than learning together.
Thinking hats doesn’t begin with criticism. It starts with group of persons willing to collaboratively see a problem holistically. firstly, the group has to wear different hats in a particular order. I will state the hats used. Firstly, white hat: we try to increase the pool of information. Eg. Discrimination faced by working women. Secondly, red hat: different emotions are expressed regarding the matter. In this case, people might be angry or indifferent. Next, comes the yellow hat: we talk about the positive aspects of a matter. Like, women are given crèche, maternity leaves etc. Then, the negative aspects are considered wearing the black hat like woman increasing facing workplace abuse, glass ceiling effect etc. The time has come for finding out creative solutions to the problem. With the green hat, lateral thinking is focused. Eg,ladies given flexihours, cab facility, job rotation etc. Lastly, to manage the discussion, at times the blue hat is applied by the facilitator.
These hats will facilitate thinking about matters analytically as well as laterally. There is focus on knowing matters through different vantage points rather than conforming to a perspective. I do think such a dialogue mechanism is very important in democracy. The tendency to grow intolerant can be tackled easily , when people wear hats of same color which can reduce significantly our attitude of ‘ I am right’ which is the source of all conflict. Imagine a sane world,without censorship,bans, brutal killings, exile, wars on people, nature.