gos·sip: idle talk or rumor, especially about the personal or private affairs of others.
Gossip: from the Old English, godsibb, “godparent,” equivalent to God + sib, as in sibling.
Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc.
Strange, isn’t it? Somehow we humans can move the meaning of a word from “God relative” to “slanderer.”
Someone asked what the Vedic world view on gossip would be. Among other things, it would include these two ideas:
1) What you think of me is none of my business.
If we live our lives fully, it is a given that someone, somewhere, will be displeased. Someone will have judgment about what we did, how we did it and the color of the shoes we wore while doing it. To live on the basis of what “they” will think is to make ourselves crazy.
We must live from our fine level of feeling, from that connectedness deep within to nature itself, a true guide that, by following it, will take us always in the direction of our highest self and our greatest good. What someone else thinks of me, speaks of me, gossips about me is on them. It is a report on their state of consciousness. It really is none of my business. And if I am involved in the business of life, I will not even have time enough to care.
2) The only place we can control gossip is in ourselves, in our conversations with our fellows.
When we find ourselves involved in a conversation that may be verging on gossip, we say something like, “Well, they can’t be all bad.” It’s amazing to watch what can happen. We backtrack. “No. Of course not. They’re not that bad at all.” We begin to think of their finer qualities, the finer qualities that exist within each of us. Even the most heinous criminal was at one time an innocent child. We can recognize that quality of innocence in anyone, however deeply it may be buried. And by recognizing it, we grow it in our awareness. We see more of it in our assessment of that person. By growing it in our awareness, it grows in consciousness. Growing in consciousness, it grows in them.
As we grow what is best in consciousness and each other, we may find ourselves, and these others, behaving more like siblings of God.
Today I will pay attention to what is right in the people around me, rather than what is wrong, and I will take my attention away from what others may have to say about me.
Brook, scream, wet plate collodion tintype, DTPC, LA
All original material copyright © 2018 Jeff Kober