“In a 2008 movie titled “Doubt,” Philip Seymour Hoffman, cast as Father Brendan Flynn, gave what I consider a perfect sermon about gossip, in one of the scenes. He told his congregation a story about a woman who went for repentance to her local priest. The sin she was confessing was gossip. The priest advised her to say a couple of prayers and suggested that she tears and opens one of her pillows and dispose the feathers from her bedroom window, which was located in a flat on the tenth floor of a big apartment building. When she followed-up with the priest the next day, he asked her what had happened when she tore up the pillow. She explained that the wind had blown away all the feathers in different directions. She then asked the priest if her sin had been forgiven. “Go and collect all the feathers and pack them back into your pillow case,” responded the priest. ”But father,” she cried, “they were blown-off to different directions and I cannot find them all.” The priest replied, “That my friend, is gossip.”
This story explains the nature and effects of gossip. It goes far off to places where the original gossiper does not have access to. If one analyzes the feather concept, he/she will concur with me that the original color, weight, and shape of the feather is 99% altered after being blown away by the wind from one place to another. Gossip is similar. Once news leaves its original source, by the time it gets to the 10th person, the content and hence predetermined objective of the message is altered. Considering the fact that each one of us is unique, understands, and interprets information differently, one can never be certain about the honesty in a message unless of course it is being received directly from its original source.
Therefore, what makes us so convinced that the gossip we receive is based on facts? In most cases, when we receive the gossip we get so overwhelmed with the content and often forget to inquire about the information path. How many people have been involved in the information process from its original source to the point of your involvement? Is the source of the gossip reliable, or is it someone else’s truth, based on personal perceptions, experiences, mindset, and/or subconscious programming? Categorically, there are so many obstacles that come up between the encoding and decoding process of every information transference process. The list of obstacles is inexhaustible. Why then react impulsively to information, especially if the instant decoding presents negative concepts? Certainly, there can be positive aspects of gossiping; however, just by the mere fact that it is gossip implies that it is either premature information still in the processing or it wasn’t meant for everyone to know.
What’s more, gossip has been known to be the cause of the downfall of many kingdoms, friendships, families, and companies. Moreover, it has a great impact on influencing perceptions and hence the decision-making process.”
For more inspirational and life changing stories, get yourself a copy of Do Not Force It, Tap The Good.
The book shares lessons that humanity can live by.
Love and light
Dr. Jacinta Mpalyenkana
Counselor/ Success Coach and Professional Speaker
1. Love, Men and Money: How to Attract and Retain them
2. Becoming a SEX CEO on a Spiritual Level
3. Do Not Force it, Tap The Good.