What Right Speech Means

This seems very appropriate, especially current as the political climate turns even uglier. I receive these daily Dharmas from Tricycle and really enjoy them, useful e-mail.

What Right Speech Means

Right speech means abstention (1) from telling lies, (2) from backbiting and slander and talk that may bring about hatred, enmity, disunity and disharmony among individuals or groups of people, (3) from harsh, rude, impolite, malicious and abusive language, and (4) from idle, useless and foolish babble and gossip. When one abstains from these forms of wrong and harmful speech one naturally has to speak the truth, has to use words that are friendly and benevolent, pleasant and gentle, meaningful and useful. One should not speak carelessly: speech should, be at the right time and place. If one cannot say something useful, one should keep “noble silence.”

–Walpola Rahula, What the Buddha Taught

from Everyday Mind, edited by Jean Smith, a Tricycle book


2 Responses to “What Right Speech Means”

  1. Hmm.. to be honest, I am more like Alice Roosevelt Longworth, who said, “If you can’t say anything nice about anybody, come sit by me…”

  2. I might come and sit with you but I'd feel really, really guilty!

    Depends who we are talking about can we start with McMoron & Failin'


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