We all do experience this at some point.
Folklore says that, "If your right ear is ringing, someone is saying good things about you.
If your left ear rings, someone is saying bad things about you."
Well, imagine angels sitting on our shoulders and writing every one of your words. Bad words on the left. Good words on the right. What would they write about you? Would the angel sitting on your left shoulder have its scroll smeared with scribblings? Would his scroll be empty?
Another saying warns us, "If you do not have anything to say. Do not say anything at all." Surely, you would be speechless if you saw the scrolls of these angels.
We have several rules about speaking in our household.
The most important one is: Do not talk about anyone when they are not here.
First, that means that we do not report conversations. When someone tells us something, we do not share it. When you report conversations out of context, you make other people sound bad. When you report conversations, you give yourself the right to judge. And you betray someone's trust.
Second, when our kids have something negative to say about their friends, they solve it on the spot. We gather around and talk about it. When their friends are out the door, they cannot accuse, criticize, or make remarks anymore. This gives the opportunity for their friends to defend themselves. This way, bad feelings are not developed. Things are tamed in the bud. And there is no point growing a culture of bad feelings inside your heart. It just spoils your heart.
Third, that means that when someone asks us for help, we do not discuss their problems with anyone. I do not want to know why one of my husband's friends appeared in the middle of the night and asked for help. I just do not want to know, and the kids were hushed when they asked.
First, I do not want to form opinions.
Second, I have only one side of the facts.
Third, there is no point to know just for curiosity sake.
There is no point to make the other person feel bad.
We all have bad years.
This is how we practice hushing as compassion.
This wasn't learned in one day.
This took efforts.
Of course, we make exceptions and not always follow our own rules. We're human. You're human.
But peace often comes with less words. The less you speak about others, the more compassion you demonstrate.