Not Cut Out for Discussion

“I am a good listener and a good hearer: I understand at once, and clearly. But usually I only know the right answer later. And so, with certain exceptions, I am not cut out for discussion, and least of all for conversation. I can very well remember that one of the most painful experiences of my youth was when I had the absolutely certain feeling that an assertion made by someone was false, and I could offer nothing in reply, or only the most ridiculously inadequate reply, because my tongue was paralysed by my inarticulate thoughts. On the other hand it was this very impotence to answer on the spot which occasioned my endeavours to attain clarity, and to break up the solid rock of my feeling of certainty, to carve out of it logical arguments.” (Theodor Haecker, 1950, Journal in the Night)