Remember Mr. Rogers’ song, “What do you do with the mad that you feel?”? I’ve been thinking we could use a new rendition titled, “What do you feel from the thoughts that you think?” There is a lot of talk about how our thoughts crate our reality. But even before they have the chance to do that, our thoughts have a direct impact on how our bodies react to the thoughts we think and the words we speak.

It started with a commitment not to gossip. It is taking a lot of courage to leave that last sentence on the page, not edit it, not use the first person plural and thus feel less vulnerable. Actually the commitment was not to indulge in lashon ha’ra, which is translated from the Hebrew as gossip but literally means the bad/evil tongue. Somehow committing not to indulge in lashon harah feels loftier than to think of myself as a gossip.

Staying aware my speech takes forethought and basketsful of do-overs. I continue to catch myself before speaking thoughtlessly or using another’s human foibles as springboard to rant.  I notice more frequently how the negative impulses leave me feeling agitated, powerless, diminished. I can feel sullied. Turning away brings relief, a shimmer of love and kindness for myself and others.  Oh for the day when all 7 billion or so of us on this planet recognize how our thoughts make us feel and strive to use our thoughts in the service of our own inner peace and by extension a more peaceful world.

What say you? What thoughts do you struggle to rein in? How do you turn away from speaking words that mar your sense of well-being?


photo credit licensed by Creative Commons: “IGOTF | Independent Government Observers Task Force Gavel” by danxoneil


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