Why do we gossip? It’s rather entertaining, I suppose. It doesn’t require much thought and it’s exciting when the original is exaggerated and borders on the genre of literature called Tall Tales.
But ultimately, after the brief excitement of it all, we are left with a feeling of emptiness. Somewhere deep in our Spirit, we know that we should not have engaged in such a low-level of communication. We may have just contributed to minimizing another person’s worth and participated in character assassination.
And how much truth is involved in the whisperings and rumblings? A Jewish Proverb says, “What you don’t see with your eyes, don’t witness with your mouth.” As adults, it is unbecoming when we are seen whispering in public places. It is a sure sign that whatever we are saying probably should not be taking place and certainly not in the view of others.
Of course, there are distinctive places to spread gossip, but public places are rarely the best location. Whenever I see adults hovered together whispering, I feel disappointed. I guess it reminds me of school-aged girls and well, I simply expect more of grown-ups. Errol Flynn said, “It isn’t what they say about you; it is what they whisper.”
Grant it. I have gossiped, but I usually do it on the phone, at home. And afterwards, I often feel bad after belittling someone else. It is a depleting energy and it takes everyone down a notch. I later feel that I should not have been drawn into the conversation and I vow to work harder on avoiding those pitfalls. I have to remember when talking with particular people to be on guard or just keep the conversations short. A Spanish Proverb reminds me that “Whoever gossips to you will gossip about you.”
We should look for people’s assets and focus on rectifying our own shortcomings, as best we can. If we look deep enough into other’s lives, there is certainly some admirable trait. Perhaps, we can learn something, as we build our own lives to new heights. This can strengthen our characters and make us less likely to jump on the bandwagon and say things that we may live to regret. Though the author is Unknown, one quote reads, “Do not repeat anything you would not sign your name to.”
I have observed so many admirable people and noticed traits that I wanted to emulate in my own life. I studied them from a distance and I believe that it has helped me build totem poles in my own life. Tearing others down or destroying anything, for that matter, is rarely fruitful. We should do as Walt Whitman suggests when he said, “Be curious, not judgmental!”
Lynn M. September 27, 2015