What Does Dialectical Mean?

What does “Dialectical” mean?

“... the process of thought by which apparent contradictions are seen to be part of a higher truth.”
–The Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition, 2009

“ The process or art of reasoning through discussion of conflicting ideas.”
– The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Home and Office Edition, 1998

The word “dialectical” describes the notion that two opposing ideas can be true at the same time. In DBT, there is always more than one way to think about a situation, and all people have something unique and different to offer. A life worth living has both positive and negative aspects (happiness, sadness, anger) and all of these aspects are necessary and valuable. It is sometimes hard to accept ourselves and our actions while simultaneously recognizing the need for change. Dialectics allows for a balance between acceptance and change, both of which are necessary for establishing a fulfilling life.