Is gossip crucial for survival?

| David Lewis | Humanity

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According to the Gossip Theory – oh yes!

This theory asserts that gossip is a crucial mean by which people can gather information on each other in groups too large for its members to personally know each other. That is to say, get the “big picture” and act in accordance.

Gossip has also been identified by Robin Dunbar, an evolutionary biologist, as aiding social bonding.

 

Bonus fact 1: Bonus fact: The Bahai religion sees gossip as the “worst human quality and the greatest sin…”. In its view, even murder would be considered less reprobate than backbiting. Baha’u’llah – the founder of the Bahai religion – stated that: “Backbiting quencheth the light of the heart, and extinguished the life of the soul.” When someone kills another, it only affects their physical condition. However, when someone gossips, it affects in more than one way.

 

Bonus fact 2: Do godparents gossip by definition? – Oh yes, actually, the very word Godparent derives from the Gossip. In Old English gossip was pronounced ‘godsibb’, which was a combination of god and sibb (short for sibling, relative). Namely, godparents are relatives by the power of god.

In turn, Godparents are generally very close friends of the biological parents, namely persons with whom they gossip.

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And for those who are really into gossip, here how it is perceived in different religions: 

In Judaism, gossip is known as the ‘evil tongue’ and is considered a sin. Speaking negatively about people, even if retelling true facts, degrades the dignity of both the speaker and the subject of the gossip. 

Proverbs 18:8: “Words of gossip are like choice morsels: they go down to a man’s innermost parts.”

The Christian perspective of gossip is more complex and modern. While acknowledging the negative aspects of gossip, Biblical scholars have identified the form and function of gossip as a social process; and even identifying a socially positive role under certain circumstances. Nonetheless, for the most part, the New Testament sees gossip as a dangerous negative speech.

Indeed, the Epistle to the Romans associates gossips (“backbiters”) with a list of sins including sexual immorality and with murder:

28: And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

29: Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

30: Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents.

Islam considers gossip (backbiting) the equivalent of eating the flesh of one’s dead brother. According to Muslims, backbiting harms its victims without offering them any chance of defense, just as dead people cannot defend against their flesh being eaten. 

 

 

According to the Gossip Theory – oh yes!

This theory asserts that gossip is a crucial mean by which people can gather information on each other in groups too large for its members to personally know each other. That is to say, get the “big picture” and act in accordance.

Gossip has also been identified by Robin Dunbar, an evolutionary biologist, as aiding social bonding.

 

Bonus fact1: Bonus fact: The Bahais religion sees gossip as the “worst human quality and the greatest sin…”. In its view, even murder would be considered less reprobate than backbiting. Baha’u’llah – the founder of the Bahai religion – stated that: “Backbiting quencheth the light of the heart, and extinguished the life of the soul.” When someone kills another, it only affects their physical condition. However, when someone gossips, it affects in more than one way.

 

Bonus fact 2: Do godparents gossip by definition? – Oh yes, actually, the very word Godparent derives from the Gossip. In Old English gossip was pronounced ‘godsibb’, which was a combination of god and sibb (short for sibling, relative). Namely, godparents are relatives by the power of god.

 

In turn, Godparents are generally very close friends of the biological parents, namely persons with whom they gossip.

And for those who are really into gossip, here how it is perceived in different religions: 

In Judaism, gossip is known as the ‘evil tongue’ and is considered a sin. Speaking negatively about people, even if retelling true facts, degrades the dignity of both the speaker and the subject of the gossip. 

Proverbs 18:8: “Words of gossip are like choice morsels: they go down to a man’s innermost parts.”

The Christian perspective of gossip is more complex and modern. While acknowledging the negative aspects of gossip, Biblical scholars have identified the form and function of gossip as a social process; and even identifying a socially positive role under certain circumstances. Nonetheless, for the most part, the New Testament sees gossip as a dangerous negative speech.

Indeed, the Epistle to the Romans associates gossips (“backbiters”) with a list of sins including sexual immorality and with murder:

28: And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

29: Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

30: Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents.

Islam considers gossip (backbiting) the equivalent of eating the flesh of one’s dead brother. According to Muslims, backbiting harms its victims without offering them any chance of defense, just as dead people cannot defend against their flesh being eaten. 

 

 

According to the Gossip Theory – oh yes!

This theory asserts that gossip is a crucial mean by which people can gather information on each other in groups too large for its members to personally know each other. That is to say, get the “big picture” and act in accordance.

Gossip has also been identified by Robin Dunbar, an evolutionary biologist, as aiding social bonding.

 

Bonus fact1: Bonus fact: The Bahais religion sees gossip as the “worst human quality and the greatest sin…”. In its view, even murder would be considered less reprobate than backbiting. Baha’u’llah – the founder of the Bahai religion – stated that: “Backbiting quencheth the light of the heart, and extinguished the life of the soul.” When someone kills another, it only affects their physical condition. However, when someone gossips, it affects in more than one way.

 

Bonus fact 2: Do godparents gossip by definition? – Oh yes, actually, the very word Godparent derives from the Gossip. In Old English gossip was pronounced ‘godsibb’, which was a combination of god and sibb (short for sibling, relative). Namely, godparents are relatives by the power of god.

 

In turn, Godparents are generally very close friends of the biological parents, namely persons with whom they gossip.