The Master asked a particular disciple, "Why do you enjoy gossip? It is such a dangerous thing. Gossip shows no respect for anybody. It weakens and ruins others' strength. When people gossip and find faults with others, they become such rogues. Again, when people become victims to gossip, they become helpless and hopeless. In every way, gossip is a very subtle, contagious and dangerous disease. Please tell me, why do you enjoy gossip?"
"I get joy from gossiping," answered the disciple.
The Master replied, "If you enjoy gossip at the cost of others' suffering, then what kind of disciple are you? Do you not see how you are making others' lives miserable by gossiping? The time you spend gossiping, can you not spend that time praying and meditating?"
"But I do not get any joy in prayer and meditation; whereas in gossip, I get tremendous joy. Master, you always say to keep innocent joy in our lives. After all, I am not killing anybody."
"Yes, you are not killing anybody. But you are getting only malicious pleasure. This pleasure is not real joy. Anything that you do when you are kind to people, when you are sympathetic to others, or when you serve people, will give you real joy. But when you gossip, you are really hurting people. There is very little and often no truth behind gossip. You are creating something false and absurd.
"Now I am telling you. If you want real joy — not the false joy which gossip gives — and if you have nothing else to do, just read, run, sing or even rest. There are so many good things that you can do.
"In every way, gossip weakens humanity. The best thing is to strengthen humanity. Since you are in the spiritual life, you have to strengthen humanity at every moment with your love for truth and with your concern for reality and divinity. Please do not enjoy gossip. When you gossip, world-destruction and self-destruction proudly march forward. Hand in hand they go together."