Question: A neighbour of mine swears very loudly, and when he does that, I always say, "God bless you." Is this the right thing to do?

Sri Chinmoy: In such cases, the best thing will be for you not to say anything to him. If you feel that you really want to help him, then you can expend five minutes of your most precious time in inner prayer to the Supreme, asking the Supreme to give him some illumination. He is ignorant, but if you tell him that he is ignorant, he will only be angry, and he will make no progress. But you can pray to the Supreme if you want to, if you feel from within that it is your duty, or that it will be worthwhile.

But you have to know one thing: whether that man is basically good or not. If basically he is not good, then I do not want you to spend even five minutes on him. Let him, at God’s hour, through the process of evolution, come to some basic understanding of the truth of this kind of behaviour towards God. If basically he is very low, then you don’t have to waste any time, because it will not do him any good. But if he is basically good, you can offer five minutes of your prayer to the Supreme to change his attitude towards God. He is, after all, God’s child, and God Himself is hearing him. As God is hearing your prayers and observing your meditation, so also God is listening to his curses. God has enough strength to bear his insults.

But before you try to help him, you have to see whether he is a good man or if he is basically bad. If he is bad by nature, then forget about him. If he has many good qualities, but he has developed this bad habit of cursing, then offer your prayers to the Supreme for five minutes to change his way of speaking and thinking.

From:Sri Chinmoy,AUM — Vol.II-6, No. 2, February 1980, Vishma Press, 1980
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