Are you one of those people who make decisions by the opinions or appraisals of others? Do gossips among your social network cause disturbance to you even though you know it is not true?

In today’s Digital Age, we are surrounded by all forms of opinions, gossips, appraisals, sometimes even all kinds of irresponsible defamation in the social media.  We’ve seen how people fall into depression or even turn suicidal just because they are not able to handle what they read or hear in the social media or workplace.

A study was done in USA from 120 college students and they found that gossips changed their own opinions and the influence of gossip remained even the people had personal interactions. This experiment showed the power of social conditioning and the weakness of human mind because they rather believe what others are telling than trusting their personal experience.

How can we go beyond social coditioning and not allow any negative influence into our inner space?

In yoga tradition, the first step towards yoga is to bring awareness to our verbalisation by controlling our spoken words and also not allowing others’ words to affect us.  The worst thing that can happen to a human being is to allow others to affect one self. Unfortunately, a huge percentage of humanity is suffering from one psychological cancer i.e. gossiping too much about others or suffering from others’ words. Gossiping is an irreponsible act because people who gossip alot tend to enjoy the juiciness of the stories at someone else’s expense. Too much attachment to what is seen and heard in the outer world can cause illogical fears and psychological disorders like anxiety, fear psychosis and depression.

The main problem is that the human mind has become so fragile, they rather believe what others are telling them than trusting their own experience.  These people have forgotten who they really are and hence they don’t stand up with integrity and clarity.

We can learn something from the ancient wisdom of Bhagavad Gita. Krishna, an enlightened being who was the charioteer of Arjuna, the prince and a warrior who was supposed to fight the Mahabharata war. But Arjuna refused to fight in the war because he was suffering from the engram of other’s opinion which he needed to get out.  Arjuna was caught in a dilemma due to concern for the opinion of others. Krishna gave him this sacred message – Do not allow others’ opinion or appraisal to hit, affect or change your lifestyle or opinions based on your personal experience.

I couldn’t agree more with Krishna’s sacred advice. In my own spiritual journey, I could have shut down many doors for expansion if I had listened to other’s opinions.  Instead, I held on to my own experiences and trusted my inner guru for guidance. That happens only when you spend time with yourself, listen to the great sacred truths and remember those spiritual experiences which come handy in moments of confusion. They are the reminders about life and its illusions. With this clarity, it leads us to courage, not other way round.

In essence, life is all about standing up for what we believe based on our personal experience. This is a spiritual quality which is required for one’s evolution.  One key lesson to imbibe is not allowing other’s words to penetrate or pollute our pure inner space, instead have a deep trust in our own experience with clarity and integrity. This is an important step to healing ourselves and getting back to our Presence.  Namaste.