Gossip: Fact or Fiction?

It's wrong even if it's true.

Comments (10)

(10) Bob Rabinoff, November 17, 2007 11:29 PM

Ketubot 77b on Lying out of Modesty

Today's (7 Kislev) Daf Yomi:
[R. Shimon b. Yochai asks R. Yehoshua b. Levi when he gets to Gan Eden:]
Was a rainbow ever seen in your days? R. Yehoshua b. Levi said to him "Yes." "If so you are not the son of Levi." [The Gemara comments:] But that was not so -- a rainbow never was seen. But he thought "I will not boast about myself."

(9) Stan Greenberg (aka Soldann), November 16, 2007 12:05 PM

Thank you.

I am continually moved and inspired each time I listen to your videos. Thanks for being such an inspiring and resonant vessel. Thanks also to you and the Rabbi for hosting my daughter, her family and I for Shabbos meal during my recent visit to MD.

(8) Anonymous, November 16, 2007 7:58 AM

To Anon in Brazil

Sounds like you're doing just the right thing.When you continue to greet this person even when you are unpleasantly treated, you are maintaining dignity and contributing to Shalom in the world. You can never lose if you behave properly.

Hashem sees your pain, and also your dignified behavior, and you will get rewarded for this immensely.

(7) Annette, November 14, 2007 8:45 AM

truth or not

Lashon HaRa is simply IMPROPER (or Evil) Speech... there's no need to limit the term 'Improper' to gossip alone. In the early 80's (or 70's?) we used to say 'constructive criticism' and 'destructive criticism' and before we knew it 'everyone' was an expert at criticizing! (expert= eh-spurting their own opinions again) and cutting up others, actually falling into the trap of self aggrandisement by putting down others. It was all an excuse to finger-point, become-an-instant-sage, attention getting, to avoid and evade one's own lack of will to self-improvement.
I rarely turn on the t.v., but for 30 seconds yesterday past noon one of the Canadian stations was showing 4 U.S. very bewildered women who were FIRED from their jobs for spreading gossip about their co-workers. The women said 'I couldn't believe that's what I got fired for'.
That's right, they were born, bred and raised with gossip. Consensus STILL doesn't make a wrong right.
Good for those employers.
But I can imagine the field day the 'media' will have with this issue, THE media themselves: oh natural/au naturel the gods and goddesses themselves at the art of Lashon HaRa.
'Convincing' not needed on this topic.
If we put ourselves in a frame of mind that EVERY SINGLE TIME we open our mouths it would be IN FRONT of The Almighty, THEN what and how would we 'say it'? would we say it?
How about this formula: If it isn't kind or necessary SHUT UP. Or think of something kind, and hopefully necessary. (when my kids where very young, we worked on this saying through tears and laughter)
I bet Bob remembers that one, & this one too: Good L.U.C.K. = Labouring Under Correct Knowledge (ie get informed - Torah is the best source)

(6) Peter, November 14, 2007 4:54 AM


Gossip is judgement. Even if you "SEE", something happen, you can not go into a persons mind. Only G-D, can. What appears to be obvious, may be totally innocent. Once the damage has been done; it is irreversible, and usually comes at a high price to the victim.

(5) Marc Shapiro, November 13, 2007 7:58 PM

Great meeting you

Spoke with Karyn and we agree on points 1,2. You'll have to convince me further about #3 :).

(4) Cipi Lobel, November 13, 2007 5:08 PM

So on target!

I look forward each week to see if Lori is on the menu. Every word she says, and the way she says it, speaks to me. To describe "Rationalize" as Rational Lies is BRILLIANT. I wish I had a friend like Lori in real life. Unfortunately, as good as we try to be, if we meet in a public arena, the main topic is always about someone else. When we try to stop, it seems that conversation itself stops. There is nothing else to talk about!! What a shame. We need to learn a different language and enjoy each other's company, without ripping apart someone else's life!
Thank you Lori.

(3) Laylu Sokol, November 12, 2007 10:04 PM

You are always on target. I look foward to your messages each week. Expressed with a clarity that G-d has blessed you with!!!

(2) Anonymous, November 11, 2007 4:30 PM

loshon hora hurts

It´s a shame more yidden don´t take it to heart. Being the victim of loshen hora is absolutely awful. B"H I live in a building with many frum Jews, in Brazil, and one would think that living amongst the goyim we should stand even more together. However, one particular family in my building behaved very unkindly to us. 2 years running they made a birthday party for their little girl, who is the same age as my little girl and didn´t invite us. (The parties are held in the public salon in the entrance floor of the building so everyone sees whats going on. and of course my children saw and wanted to join in.) Yes I have a mitzvah of being dan l´chaf zehut, but when it happens twice and the rest of the neighbourhood children are there it really is not very pleasant. When I see the girls mother in the elevator she ignores me, even if I greet her, she may reply but doesn´t look at me. Some people can be really mean and don´t realize how hurtful it is. If I know for sure that I never did anything to offend her or upset her then it seems her behaviour is unjustified. How is a frum Jew supposed to react to this kind of situation?

(1) Rosen, November 11, 2007 9:06 AM

grapevines of (mis)information

The problem with gossip is that it can get so misconceived and slanted, whether or not it is true can become very murky. It's like when children play the game Telephone where they whisper a message from one ear to the other, and it can become so slanted, that the message gets lost. In school, gossip tends to be a fact of life where rumors are spread, regardless of whether they are true or false. It's time we start being more honest with each other in a more positive light, and not carry out misinformation that results in significant conflict, which is one potential thing that is wrong with the world, such as starting wars without solid proof of pretense to do so, or stereotype a certain group to the point they are persecuted.


Submit Your Comment:

  • Display my name?

  • Your email address is kept private. Our editor needs it in case we have a question about your comment.

  • * required field 2000
Submit Comment

Receive Weekly Spirituality Emails

Sign up to our Spirituality Newsletter.

Our privacy policy