My grandmother use to say "believe nothing of what you hear, and only half of what you see." I don't know if I really understood it back then, but wow does it make sense to me now! It's so easy to get caught up in the gossip that we don't usually stop and consider if it's the truth or not. We hear something and pretty soon we're repeating it, usually embellished a bit for effect, or unintentionally leaving something important out. Even when reading things, how often do we just believe it, without even questioning it?
It can get even trickier when we see something, and we're "sure" about what is going on. We don't realize how much we fill in information that's not really there. Human beings have a very intelligent brain, and it's often working all on it's own, without any guidance, just putting information together and drawing conclusions.
It can take patience, and discipline to pay attention to what our minds are doing with the information we receive. Getting in the habit of asking ourselves if there could be any other information, or possibilities, can alleviate a lot of unnecessary drama. I find it helpful to replace "I know" with "I wonder". It helps guide my mind away from assuming and more toward being open. Using a filter rather than blurting out what my mind is thinking also helps in a lot of situations. Asking more questions when communicating with others, and asking myself what else I don't know are also helpful in avoiding misunderstandings.
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