Sunday Morning Sermon - Jan 26 2014
People have always been the interfering kind, wanting to peep into other peoples lives and gossip about them, sometimes in very nasty and insulting ways.
Interference is always the culprit in most marital relationships, especially in Africa, Arabia, and Asian countries, where the culture of family and extended family is very dominant on peoples lives.
Indulging in gossip about other peoples private lives is another trait that is seen commonly in most of these regions. Sometimes the chatter can be harmless and just meant as a discussion topic between friends and family. In other cases it can also be harsh, hurtful, and horrible, where the intent of the source is not very honorable.
Prasan and his old school mate of over 50 years, Siva, are chatting on FB one evening.
Siva: "Machan, I was at a party the other day, I heard something about you which upset me badly. can I discuss it with you?"
Siva: "I heard your daughters marriage ended up in divorce. What happened. secondly you sold your house in Colombo to Ahmed? You have no plans of going back?"
Prasan: "yes, she was divorced in September, it was a mutual decision she and her husband made between themselves and they did not get into any unpleasant or difficult situations"
Siva: "I feel so sorry. Inwardly I feel so bad. You must be going through a lot of worries. I pray you find a way out."
Prasan: "No worries, alls well. Life must go on. People must make their decisions and live their lives as they seem best for themselves. We are all human. And there are 8 billion people on earth. Why cry cos of a few? They are professionals, they have their jobs, they are independent, and will survive"
Siva: "No Machaan, it is your family and your offspring. It is your happiness and your children come first. You must find a solution. you cannot leave without a solution."
Prasan: "what solution? is another marriage a solution? to what problem? isnt marriage the original problem? they are old enough to know whats good for them and they will manage their lives well"
Siva: "Between you and me, it was Mala's grand daughter's B'day party, Fonny, Albert, and Mohideen and I were there. I remember someone said that you had sold or rented your house to Sunil's wife's mother. I heard it as sold and then the failure of the marriage. I was shocked and had no clue. Topic was then changed but everyone was worried sick for you. Please keep this to yourself. I hope you are not upset that I discussed this topic. I know you for over 50 years and could not take up this news."
Prasan: "Well, we can do what we can do only for our kids, the rest is in their hands, and life is filled with so many variables, values, and viciousness these days, so they choose their own paths according to their thoughts and needs"
Siva: "yes, thats true, but these guys were kind of laying it on, over and over again as if to say you may be down in the dumps cos of this situation and I was really upset with what I heard"
Now, who is trying to be the nice guy here and also who is trying to portray who is not so very nice?
While friends and family may have true concerns for their own this type of chatter doesn't leave much god taste when one hears about it in this manner. The undertones are certainly not that well intended, in my view.
However, at least one gets a great opportunity to be able to understand and assess who is who when such information trickles down the grapevine.
It is fine if one can be concerned based on ones love for the other. But when it starts to drip into statements that seem to imply some form of pity and condolence of another, then it can be seen to be not so nice.