The Hierarchy of Conversations

“When talking about others is motivated by thoughts of ill will, jealousy, or attachment, conversations turn into gossip.

“These thoughts may seem to be subconscious, but if we pay close attention to our mind we’ll be able to catch them in the act. Many of these are thoughts that we don’t want to acknowledge to ourselves, let alone to others, but my experience is that when I become courageous enough to notice and admit them, I’m on my way to letting them go.

“Also, there’s a certain humor to the illogical way that these negative thoughts purport to bring us happiness. Learning to laugh at our wrong ways of thinking can be therapeutic.”

-Thubten Chodron, “The Truth About Gossip”


When reading this, I was reminded of a conversation with a former boss of mine, Sam Robinson.  We had just had an dinner with our wives and some really great conversations.  “You know, Tom, the best conversations are about philosophy and intellectual awareness.  Then, there are conversations about things and places. Then, lastly there are conversations about people.  We had a great conversation tonight.”



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