|By Rachitha Poornima Cabral [ Published Date: October 14, 2014 ]|
Gossip – The Queen of all Evils
The Dictionary defines Gossip as casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details which are not confirmed as true.
Gossiping – is something that we all indulge in at times. Talking about a neighbour’s car, the personal life of a film star, discussing someone else’s financial gains or losses, the list is endless. But unless it personally hits us, we never realise how dangerous gossiping can be. We think its fun that yesterdays news become today’s headlines. This topic has been on my mind for a very long time and instead of writing on Social, Political or Economic issues this seems to be a burning issue for all of us living inside the thresholds of a close knit community. Be it in a workplace, among friends, family, social gatherings, gossip can lead to character assassination. On one hand, we talk of moving forward in terms of technology and progress, but on the other hand, humanity and empathy seems to be dying a slow death.
Character assassination can destroy a person emotionally, physically and psychologically. What makes me say this with so much of a conviction is an incident that hit me a few years ago, in an Institution that I worked in. I still remember a student of the Institution committing suicide, by swallowing glass pieces, just because some of her classmates out of jealousy had gone around ruining her reputation, to such an extent that she could no longer bear it.
I feel sorry for her classmates because the guilt that they carry with them will be forever, but I feel sorry for the girl because she never realised before taking such a drastic step to understand this one simple truth. “Reputation is what people think you are and Character is what you really are.” So what really matters is what you think of yourself, and not what others judge you to be.
Proverbs 16:28 says that “A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends”.
Staying away from gossip mongers may not always be easy as we are usually surrounded by such characters everywhere.
But they say What goes around comes around. Just one simple rule to remember is this. If someone gossips about everyone to you, then they are gossiping about you to everyone else. It’s like a bad chain reaction.
We have all been through the stage where we are faced with a dilemma when we come across people who spread false rumours about us and i‘ve seen that usually we resort to these 4 ways of handling them. We either:
1. IGNORE 2. CONFRONT 3. Get VENGEFUL 4. FORGIVE and FORGET
Ignoring something someone has spoken about you may not be easy, but it’s not impossible. It is just that this involves a lot of will power. Especially when all your heart and mind is telling you to go punch them in their faces.
Confronting the person who speaks wrongly of you, may not make sense at times. You are wrong if you think that they will feel guilty and stop gossiping hereafter, but people with dirty mouths, even when you give them a mouthwash, their mouths still stink.
Being vengeful is never a solution. You may play the tit for tat game, go around and spread rumours about the one who damaged you, but believe me, this will make you even more miserable. The happiness is short-lived, because now you have become as cheap as them and it will only make you feel more miserable, because you end up having a guilty conscience and sleepless nights.
Forgive and Forget – the fourth option is the most difficult one, but this solution is the one that lies at the root of our moral values. In the Bible, the book of Mathew 6:14-15 says
“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins”.
I’ve realised that this is the best way to have your revenge. When you forgive People who hurt you, you get double of the blessings that God has in store for you.
There is a saying that An Elephant keeps walking, while the Dogs keep barking. So let the barking continue, your blessings will keep following you all the days of your life.
Remember that if you are worth gossiping, you are worth something.
Consider these steps to be sure you are not involved in gossip:
Do not mingle with someone who cant stop talking rubbish about others,.
When someone around you starts to gossip, change the subject.
If you can’t change the topic, excuse yourself and walk away from that place.
If YOU have fallen into the bad habit of gossiping ask God to change your heart.
Finally remember this “Don’t Worry about People who talk behind your Back, Remember they are behind you for a reason.
LIVE AND LET LIVE!!!!Make the World a Better Place to live in!
Rachitha Poornima Cabral
Department of English
School of Social Work