One of my mentors said “The problem with instructors is that after a while we think we have found the one true path and that everyone else is an idiot.”
I think the truth is that we discover the one true path for us and we are idiots like everyone else.
All joking aside after a few years of intense studying a specific subject one begins to have insights. Those insights can lead to a deep understanding of the subject. Then, if you are lucky, you meet someone who has a completely different perspective. It takes discipline to shut up and listen but if you do there is a potential for a “paradigm shift.” I dislike buzz words but sometimes they capture the idea. When people accepted that light acted like a particle AND a wave minds were blown and progress occurred. The “pitch for airspeed and power for altitude” Bernoulli or Newton and other mental models are useful but not comprehensive. It is difficult not to cement our minds into the theory that we understand and disregard others.
On the other hand, people who tout their ability to “think outside the box” sometimes are merely undisciplined. A basic understanding of the current theories and ideas about a subject allows one to have an intelligent conversation based on something other than conjecture. I do not have a problem with someone who says “I believe __” and does not try to disparage people who believe otherwise. The people who say “I think” and then merely regurgitate someone else’s opinion can be frustrating. I used to enjoy agitating people like that, now I generally avoid them. This is the dilemma, if I think I understand the problem better than them; could be I missing a jewel of an insight by ignoring them or am I being an arrogant fool?