Whenever the discussion of communication is raised, the sticking point seems to be around what is and what is not “gossiping.” I’ve just had a long conversation with a reader about the subject, which I’ve had with others as well. Let me see if I can describe what is 3D about gossiping and what a better way would be.
Third Dimensionality is all about duality, polarity, separativeness, division. Fifth Dimensionality is all about unity, commonality, collective endeavor. Communication that erects barriers among us, that divides us, separates us, stresses what keeps us apart, etc., is what allows Third Dimensionality to continue and prevents us from moving on to Fifth Dimensionality – or is one of the things that prevents us.
In Third Dimensionality, what we do is criticize and complain about each other, but usually we don’t do that to the person we have the criticism or complaint about. We do it with our friends, associates, family, etc. and the criticism or complaint seldom gets to the only person who can do something about it – the person the criticism or complaint is about.
Operating in this way erects barriers in the office, fractures teams, and inhibits projects. But the practice is all but invisible because we think that we should have the right to criticize and complain about others as part of our generalized free will. Well, we certainly do have the right to conduct ourselves as we wish. It isn’t that we don’t.
(1) The person being complained about usually never knows what the basis of the complaint is and therefore cannot do anything about it. They are often subjected to containment, obstruction, rejection and ostracism without knowing that they are or why they have been. Nothing is done in the light of day. The fact that they only wake up gradually to the fact that barriers have been erected against them leads to disillusionment and distrust. It often sees the one treated in this way departing the team and never knowing exactly why that outcome seemed advisable or came about. All remains simply speculation and reaction to the feeling of not being wanted.
(2) One by one, the people with whom we have disagreements are hived off from the circle of our good regard and lose their place upon the team, until the team is degraded. The team’s abilities shrink. Good personnel are lost. And the team itself subjects itself to the politics of hostility and unworkability rather than the prospects of collegiality and workability. Ultimately the team can fail or be destroyed and people scratch their heads, wondering how that happened.
This is a “normal” occurrence with offices, teams and projects in Third Dimensionality.
There’s nothing amiss in discussing another if the discussion is empowering, ennobling, cooperative, etc. These discussions forward the action and contribute to the team’s or project’s success. They promote unity and therefore unity consciousness and are, in my view, consistent with where we’re headed into Fifth Dimensionality.
But “gossiping,” or what I call negative sidebar discussions, are disempowering, debasing, uncooperative, etc. They promote disunity and disharmony and are old paradigm. They tend more towards keeping us anchored in the same divisive or polar ways of being predominant in Third Dimensionality.
For me, therefore, a better way is to refuse to gossip with or about another. As it happens, at present, when I tend towards gossip, the inner voice intervenes and gives me a jolt – and I stop my forward motion. If the criticism is indeed something that stands between me and another, then I take it to the other to get the matter cleared and out of the way. But I don’t deliver it to anyone who can’t do anything about the matter. I deliver it to the one who has that power – the person concerned. I find that works best for me.
I may still choose to associate with some and not with others, work closer with some and not with others. But the matter is a choice and not the result of persistent barriers I’ve erected as the result of gossip. I can change that choice at any time whereas, when gossip sits in the space and is withheld, I’m usually bound by my decision to gossip and withhold. I’ve erected an invisible barrier which then dictates to me what comes next.
The last comment on this subject: I don’t know if it’s the same for you, but whatever comes out of my mouth, I usually make right thereafter. If I say that I don’t like X or Y, I usually bind myself forever after to making that assertion right. I remain consistent with my statement. I justify it. I excuse myself from taking a second look at the matter.
Thus, when I say I don’t like someone else or criticize them, I tend to make that statement right as well. But if I refrain from criticizing, the matter in question can recede into the background of forgetfulness and I haven’t made a bookmark around it or a record of it. That to me is another reason for refraining from criticizing others – to deprive me of that bookmark or record.