We must always speak gently. Our tongue is always moist, showing us that our words must be cool too, and not harsh. There is no weapon that is more dangerous and hurting than the tongue, said S. Paramasivam.
If we ponder over the fact that while God has given us two ears, but only one tongue, we will realise that it is His intention that we use our ears more and our tongue less.
The tongue has been imprisoned in the mouth, with teeth on the sides, making the tongue appear like an animal entrapped in a cage.
And the tongue, if not held in check, can be more dangerous than an animal.
The ignorant speak a lot in the company of people who are as ignorant as they are. But in the presence of jnanis, they will be unable to utter even a word, for the jnani knows the extent of their ignorance.
We tend to speak harshly to those who are incapable of retorting.
Only a coward uses his tongue as a weapon. There are antidotes to the poison of snakes. There are antidotes to the bite of a dog. But what is the medicine that heals a heart that has been wounded by harsh words?
Before we speak, we must think about whether our words are likely to hurt the listener. Anything that hurts us is likely to hurt others too.
So if a statement made to us is likely to hurt us, we must not say it of others.
Those who gossip may speak a thousand words in the course of a day, and a jnani may speak only a few.
But the few words of the jnani are more pregnant with meaning than the many words of ordinary people.
We must not be angry when elders advise us, even if their words of advice are a little harsh. Will a plant grow in the shade? It needs sunlight.
The sun's heat is scorching, and yet the plant needs sunlight to thrive.
In the same way, the words of those who wish us ill, may be comforting, but they are like the shade in which nothing grows.
But the words of jnanis, even if they might not be palatable to us, will benefit us in the long run.