The problem is, the world has originally taught us that we are already born perfect. We cannot do wrong in other people’s eyes, and each one of us are entitled to walk on roses of compliments 100% of the time. Even behind your back, you will only accept and expect compliments and compliments only.
“Gossips” are thought of as evil, but we never think in a bad way if someone spread positive information about us behind our back. That is also gossip. However, if it is in a bad way, it is seen as “pure evil,” and people who don’t spread our petals of compliment should be aggressively confronted, made feel intimidated with ‘say to my face,’ type of argument that will just end in a sad mess.
Truth is, you are not that special sweetie. That world is not real.
Nobody has the supernatural power to control people’s mind. If you like the freedom of speech, then you really are taking a role of dictatorship here. Your wish to control what people say about you, is actually you fighting against human nature, like you alone, thinking that you can fight against a huge wave that will drown you in tiredness.
The Buddha stated that “Nutti Logay Anintitoe,” which means “Nobody in this world has not been gossiped of.” It is in the natural law of society, “lokgratum.” “Nintaapsangsa,” because all people who are born in this world have to have been gossiped (criticized) of and complimented at. If there is a positive, then there has to be negative in this world. Nobody gets out of it. Talking about other people behind their back is a very normal thing to do. You hear people do it all the time, you may have joined them before, so why can’t you be the centre of their gossip topic as well? Even the Buddha had been the central of gossip topic of many people while he was alive. If you know his history, he also had some people hating on him, jealous of him, even to the extent of attempting to take his life.
So what is the solution to the problem? A fight? In the worst circumstances, you may follow this trend of advice going around at the moment that you should be cutting off everyone from your life whom trespass you, in which you may include bad gossip behind your back as a fair reason to cut people off.
First of all, to do that, you have to think of them as your enemy. Is thinking about them as your enemy a happiness or suffering?
It is a thought of suffering, in which you are the first person to hurt yourself, not them.
Getting rid of people requires a lot of thoughts and planning that relies a lot upon on negativity. Is this happiness or suffering?
Then when you execute your plan, are you going to suffer or be happy doing it? You probably have to face them and get the double negative energy back.
What happens afterwards? If these people are your “best friends” that you have got rid of, then you will not be in a good place in life after losing people who you were close to. If you are prone to being lonely, then it will make you lonelier, and make you become a more bitter, and not a better person. You will become warier in relationships with people, putting blames on them, haunted by your past, instead of correcting your own negativity. This is not the result of people being evil to you, you are being evil to yourself.
When gossips arise, you can in fact use those gossips to your own benefit. First, remember that you cannot suit everyone’s expectation of how to be around them, whether it is your character or your lifestyle. However, you can take it as a self- reflection to correct your own negativity. Everyone on this earth was born with gilead, tanha, oupatan and agusonlagam, sometimes we do not know ourselves if our actions are hurting other people’s feelings. You may be too controlling to them, too flakey etc. They may love you, that’s why they stick around with you, but they do not know how to release the suppressed feelings, so they find your other friends to talk about it with to. Normally people do not know how to talk about it with you without hurting you, without you reacting very badly to it, so they don’t talk about it to you. It is suffering, it is uncomfortable to receive bad emotions back like that, so they don’t risk it. Therefore, if you find that the gossips are true about yourself, then correct that character to become a better person. If you cannot change it, be indifferent, if it is not, then smile. The rule is to be indifferent to compliments and criticism. Once you are independent from it then you are not living under the eyes of people because you are not emotionally ruled by them.
Then when you hang out together try to be your best self. If you hear anything about you, just think that they are just talking about the sungkarn, (body and character, not jit). Don’t attach your name to yourself. Be positive even when they are not. Don’t fall into the current of the world. Don’t try to change the world, but yourself. Don’t adapt oupagilead, and don’t gossip bad back either. Don’t talk back offensively to them, even in your head. Your head is the starter of suffering. They are under their own oupagilead. Gilead is a cause of suffering. So let them suffer by themselves. They are just normal people who are suffering by their own gilead. If they are acting crazy don’t judge them. In Thailand there is a saying don’t judge drunks, don’t judge crazy. You don’t have a go at them because you don’t want to build up your own gilead because of them or have a reason for reincarnation. If they are inspired to change, let them change, if not, don’t force it.
However, there is an exception that if these people intend to spread gossip to cause heat and problems in your life e.g. fall out with people, purposely paint a bad reputation to slay you down at work, then you should ubeka (let go), and leave them alone. Remember to put the jit in that state at all time, no matter what happens. If you do face this kind of problem, and you have not done anything to these people before, then remember that it is just your past agusonlagam that you have to pay back to. Then you can smile because you have already paid back your debt.
Remember, to not lose sti, and keep sigln all the time. Especially if you do lose your temper, you may be tempted to lose sigln 2. It may come out in the way that make you say things to make people fall out while you are in a state of vengeance. You may also break the other rules of not lying, and talking aggressively while you are in that state of heat. This is why it is important to remain calm and think about the rule of speech, let it be your guide, and think if the content is necessary or not. If you need to talk about it to them, it is best to make people feel comfortable around you and talk gently to them about it, rather than act in the way that will make you fall out with other people. In that way, you are not breaking any rules which can cause you suffering or their suffering. You may find that the gossips may not even exist anymore after that because people can be more open to you without you being judgmental towards them.
However, if you have thought about it and think that this friendship circle is not the circle for you, then don’t think that they are evil or anything bad, just think that they are just very different people from you, and you may want to change. Changes are not that bad and natural in life. You may find that you are happier on your own, and don’t need friends at all or in a different circle where they are much more suitable to your character and spirituality. Remember when things like this arises, you don’t have to take it the negative way, take the opportunist way, it is a much more easier path and the path that leads to freedom and happiness.