Dear brothers and sisters,

When you talk about someone who is absent, do you talk about the person’s salary, or marital status (single, divorced, second marriage…)? Or other private aspects of his/her life?

When you talk to someone, do you ask about the person’s salary, marital status, or other private aspects of his/her life?

Are you a person who knows how to keep the precepts of Buddhism?

One of the Buddhist precepts is the prohibition of gossip.

One practice of the Noble Eightfold Path to enlightenment is right speech. Right speech means truthful speech. Right speech means no lying, no rude speech, no speaking divisively, and no gossiping.

In the spiritual traditions, gossiping (and the three remaining wrong speeches – lying, rude speech, speaking divisively) are sins. Gossipers are sinners.

Gossipers make themselves ignorant, cruel, and lacking in dignity. They lose everyone’s trust and respect. They can hardly keep their head up on their career path.

So, speech can be a path to enlightenment. Speech can also be a path to the dark hell of ignorance. Practice right speech.

Have a zen day.

Phạm Thu Hương

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