Do Not Be Hasty
A friend of the well-known philosopher Socrates in ancient Greece
visited him. He was eager to share some juicy gossip, the man asked if Socrates
would like to know the story, he had just heard about a friend of theirs.
Socrates replied that before the man spoke, he needed to pass the
The first filter, he explained, is Truth. “Have you made absolutely
sure that what you are about to say is true?” The man shook his head. “No, I
actually just heard about it, and …” Socrates cut him off. “So, you don’t know for sure if it’s true. Are
you trying to say anything good or kind?” Again, the man shook his head. “No!
Actually, just the opposite. You see …”
Socrates lifted his hand to stop the man speaking. “Therefore, you
are unsure of what you want to say, and it isn’t good or kind. One filter still
remains, though, so you may yet still tell me. Is this information useful or
necessary to me? A little defeated, the
man replied, “No, not really.”
Socrates responded, turning to leave, “Well, then.” “Please don’t
say anything at all if what you wish to say is not genuine, good or kind,
useful or necessary.”
This is why in the bible, book of proverbs 20:19 says, A gossip
reveals secrets; therefore, do not associate with a babbler. So that we do
not hasty and do not pay attention to hasty.