A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends. – Proverbs 16:28
He who goes about as a slanderer reveals secrets, Therefore do not associate with a gossip. – Proverbs 20:19
O you who believe! Avoid much suspicion, in deeds some suspicions are sins. And spy not neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear God, verily, God is the one who accepts repentance, Most Merciful. (49: 12) – The Qur’an
Image culled from google
If anyone has ever seen the series, ‘Game of Thrones,’ (and I daresay there is hardly anyone who hasn’t either seen or heard of that classic) one character that has stood out for me amongst the impressive bunch isn’t the charming Jon Snow or the inebriated and intelligent dwarf, Tyrion Lannister or even the heartless and scheming Cersei Lannister.
One character that I have found curious over the past 5 seasons is the enigmatic eunuch, Lord Varys popularly known as ‘Master of the Whisperers’
This was a character that admitted himself that he had to steal food to survive until he discovered that stealing information was way better. He understood the importance of information and established a network of spies that kept the information flow coming in until he became a man with so much influence and power and fame amongst the seven kingdoms.
Eunuchs were supposed to be slaves in kingdoms back then but not Lord Varys.
This was a man that was always on the lookout for new information because he knew he could always use it to his advantage… To enhance his power.
It’s true that Information is Power but in the hands of a simpleton, it’s Gossip. Men of power know how to play these simpletons to their advantage.
He never opened his mouth to reveal things that needed to be kept a secret unless it was absolutely necessary or unless he needed to press a point. He said the little that needed to be said to achieve his aim. As a matter of fact, the first time I saw him in the movie, I thought he was a simple-minded, subservient ass-kisser in the court but how horribly wrong I was. By the end of Season 1, you were sure this was not a man to be trifled with.
Sorry I had to digress a little there. I could write a book on my impression of that series but not yet.
Let me tell you a little something about Gossip.
The issue of Gossip is a very serious issue and I’m inclined to believe no one takes it serious enough. To define ‘Gossip,’ the recurring words we see are words like idle talk, back-biting, rumours etc. Truth is that everyone has indulged in the act at one time or the other but does that make it acceptable? No.
My problem with indulging in Gossip is that no one wants to be a victim of it. It’s bad enough saying the truth about people sometimes but one major aspect of Gossip I find totally repulsive is the aspect of Back-biting or permit me to call it Slander or spreading terrible falsehood about someone.
Now there are different types of people in this world and this makes the world fun. But there are people that like sensationalism so much that a day without at least one is ruined.
There are those that will smile with you and then run behind you to say something terrible about you.
There are those that can’t stand the thought of people being happy around them without their direct or indirect input.
There are those (in the words of Alfred Pennyworth from ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ movie) that just enjoy seeing the world burn.
What exactly is the thrill of creating strife among people? What exactly is the gain of spreading lies about people or revealing the secrets of others or saying things you shouldn’t say about others?
I really need an answer to this burning question.
I’ve learnt something about Back-biters and Whisperers:
Wanna know how to spot one? Look out for those that ALWAYS have the lowest self-esteem in ANY room.
And then there are those ones that listen to gossips and never verify the news they have received but only react. If you’re in this category, at least you owe it to yourself to find out the other side before jumping to conclusions thereby playing judge. I’ll have a post for you soon.
There’s so much strife these days especially in this part of the world because there is now a rise in busy-bodies, hypocrites, cut-throats and cowards.
Yes I said it!
If you are not a coward, when you have issues with someone, take it up with the person and try as much as humanly possible to make peace or keep your peace. Stop spreading falsehood.
Anyone that has been a victim of a whisperer’s tongue knows how painful and potentially dangerous it can get. Only God knows how many times he has saved my life and your life from the forked tongues of people who will act all loving around you and turn the moment you turn.
If only God can show people things that are being said behind their back on HD…
If there is to be peace in the home, office, religious and academic institutions etc, these vipers need to be fished out. No organisation grows without unity and this type of people will ensure there is nothing of the sort.
So how do you stamp out Gossip in a group?
I’ll refer you to a very popular Greek myth you must have possibly come across.
It’s about the twelve labours of Hercules.
Hercules was given twelve madass, superhuman task to accomplish in order to serve as a form of retribution for murdering his wife and kids during a period of ‘temporary insanity’ and one of his tasks was to slay the nine-headed ‘Lernaean Hydra.’
The problem with this Hydra was that when one head was cut off, two others grew in its place and these heads were snake heads with some potent venom.
(Reminds you of some people, right?)
So what did Hercules do? He sought out the ‘main head‘ of the hydra and cut it off and that was the end of the monster.
Gossip is like a ‘Lernaean Hydra.’ When you try to silence one person, other people will take the place. So what do you do? Just like Hercules, ALWAYS STRIVE TO SEEK OUT THE SOURCE OF EVERY RUMOUR. Expose that source and let the truth come to light. If that is the constant approach, then strife in groups should cease.
If you’ve been the victim of a Backbiter’s ‘bite,’ don’t let it weigh you down. Learn to heal your heart by forgiving those kind of people. The heart is meant for loving not for storing hurt. Let us grow above such people so that we’ll all stay above and ahead every ‘Lerneaen Hydra.’
And if you engage in this dangerous practice… STOP IT!
Let me know about your experience with these ‘whisperers’ and also share ways we can put an end to gossip-fueled strife.
Thank you for reading.
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God bless you all!