Five Precepts Blues; 4.8 – divisive speech


“Abandoning divisive speech he abstains from divisive speech. What he has heard here he does not tell there to break those people apart from these people here. What he has heard there he does not tell here to break these people apart from those people there. Thus reconciling those who have broken apart or cementing those who are united, he loves concord, delights in concord, enjoys concord, speaks things that create concord.”


Some people wouldn’t consider monks the best people to ask for relationship advice, but actually, what I’ve gathered from listening to Chong Go Sunim talk about the training process, much of it is learning to co-exist together. You spend the first year of training with a group of people, studying, practicing, eating, sleeping together, with little time apart. If there is something that’s not in accord, it gets addressed fast!

Speaking of his teaching, Zen Master Daehaeng Kun Sunim, he told us she’s only ever advised one woman to get away from her husband because her life was at risk, but her usual advice is to work things out.

The first time I saw the word ‘divisive’ I had to look at it for a while to figure out what it was… divisive, divide, apart, opposite, duality. None of these words are ever used to describe right view.

I think if we were aware of how connected we actually are, we would choose to speak accordingly. At least, as I’m more aware, it slowly helps my speech!


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