This was an interesting article from the BBC about the so-called “echo chamber” that people create online by subscribing to news feeds, and social groups that they already agree with. What the article shows is that people are actually exposed to more ideas than before (in other words, the echo chamber is a myth), but that we only become more entrenched when we encounter differing viewpoints.
The Buddha spoke about this habit of “I-making” in the old sutras as something we all do, and comes from a fundamental ignorance about ourselves and how we relate to others. We cobble together our sense of identity from birth based on our sensory experiences, and our relation to others, but we take this to be an “immutable self” and the core of who we are.
The trouble is that when we perceive anything as a threat to our views (and therefore our sense of self), we become entrenched.
Instead, the Buddha encourages us to set aside personal views and observe things as they are:
“A ‘position,’ Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: ‘Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception…such are fabrications…such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.’ Because of this, I say, a Tathagata — with the ending, fading away, cessation, renunciation, & relinquishment of all construings, all excogitations, all I-making & mine-making & obsessions with conceit — is, through lack of clinging/sustenance, released.”
(MN 72 PTS, Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta: “To Vacchagotta on Fire’,
translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu )
To do otherwise is ultimately unproductive and will not lead to peace and liberation.
P.S. For more on the self (or pack thereof) check out the Sutra on the Simile of the Water Snake.