Ten years back, one fine morning. I had an urgent appointment with my boss on an important office issue. Now since my boss was busy, I was made to sit in a cozy chair waiting for my turn. Well, I had done my home work well for the meeting and was confident of having my way in the issue scheduled for discussion.
The Personal Assistant to my boss, sitting in the side of my boss cabin gave a cold stare at me and remarked ‘Sir, why you look so dull today?’ I promptly replied ‘No, I am not dull, I’m perfectly fine’ with a little annoyance in my voice. But the PA wouldn’t relent. ‘No sir, you are definitely looking dull. Hope you had a good sleep last night’ he insisted. I didn’t give up my stand. Meanwhile, as if to save me from him, my turn came and I was called. I went in confident.
After coming out with a winning smile, I thought I should counsel the PA, before he demolishes the confidence level of people he meets every day. ‘Raj, can I have a few minutes with you’ I asked him. He readily obliged and started listening to me with rapt attention.’ You know what you were trying to do me, with your words?’ I asked him. He readily replied ‘No’ Then I told him – Actually you were trying to put seeds of discouragement in my mind. But I refused to take the seeds in to my heart!
When I said this, he looked shocked and said ‘Sir, I didn’t know that. I didn’t do it purposely.’ I replied ‘Whether you purposely shoot or without purpose shoot, the bullet kills. Words are slow bullets. Had I accepted your words, I would have looked at my image in my mirror to- night and feel what Raj said is, perhaps correct!
Yes I guess I look a little dull today. And I could have actually become dull. Your word would have accomplished its purpose’. When Raj understood the implication of what he had said he was almost in tears and apologised for his action. I said Its ok for me. But don’t repeat it ever again. He stood up from his seat, got my hands and said ‘Sir, I have learnt a good lesson today that I will never forget. Thank you!’
Words can Turn into Killing Bullets or Greeting Flowers !
Many of us are like Raj, not knowing that words are powerful and can turn into killing bullets or greeting flowers. The way you choose to turn it is in your tongue. Your words can save a person who has decided to commit suicide or can make a happy person commit suicide that night! Yes, life and death are in the power of words! And you will enjoy its fruits as you learn to use it rightly. The Bible says that the world was created by God with words. God used positive words. He said’ Let there be light!’ and there was light! He did not choose to say “Let there be darkness!”
So know to choose the right words and be sure, to reap the fruits. Always be positive in your words. ‘Your words should be like gifts! And a good point is that words don’t cost you anything. In 1998 when I was working as Chief Manager in a major Public Sector Bank in a small village in Tamil Nadu, one young , physically challenged man, without both legs came crawling, to see me. His friends lifted him and put him in a chair in front of me. As he started talking, I realized that he was full of rejection on account of his handicap. I had some personal time with him and told him that God loves him the way he is, no matter how the world treated him.
’Keep going! don’t be bothered about the negative words of people. If you allow the words in you the words will sap your soul slowly’. He didn’t seem to be impressed with what I said and left as sad as he came in. But within a week I got a letter, written in his own hands “Sir, thank you for your kind words of advice. Your words have entered my heart and have changed the way I think.” Now, I am determined to be happy all my life .Why should I allow others to decide my happiness? I will not allow any negative words to affect me hereafter”. Latter he called me to address a public meeting of physically challenged people and I spoke encouraging words to all of them. I did not spend money on them but I spent just a few words. That was more valuable to them than any money I could have given.
Heart is a Fertile Soil !
Remember, your heart is like a fertile soil. If it receives a positive word, it becomes a good seed, sprouts up to yield good fruits. But if you receive a negative word into your heart, it sprouts in to a plant of evil fruits, in due course of time. Sometimes the seed may give instant fruit also. For example, a man jumped queue in a movie theater, for a box-office hit movie. This irked another man who has been standing in the queue for hours. He shouted ‘Can’t you see all of us standing, you blind idiot?’
Offended by this remarks the man who jumped the queue decided to answer him in action. Before others could guess what he is up to, he drew out a pocket knife and stabbed the other man, saying Look here, ill prove that I’m not blind!’ . Here the victim would not have ever imagined that his words would cost his life! He did not know that words can turn into knives, or flowers or slow poison, the way you to choose to use.
Your Words Make your Image !
Your words can give different images to you. They can make you a friend, enemy, idiot, wise, fatherly, motherly, loving, counselor, adviser, benefactor etc. During my college days, I knew a senior who used to be fondly referred to as ’MS’.
It took me a long time to know what ’MS’ means. It means’ Mood Spoiler!’ He enjoyed such a bad reputation as any word he uttered was sure to spoil the day! So choose your words wisely. Remember that words do not originate in tongue but deep from your heart.
Words of Authorities are Special!
Words of persons who occupy positions of authority are powerful. Parents, Elders, Teachers, Civil Officers etc are persons of authorities. Their words are something so powerful they can turn into a blessing or curse, as pronounced. Sometimes we come across a father or mother yelling at their children’ Can’t you understand this small matter? You are…. fit for nothing! Better go for a shepherd’s job!’ These words can be very damaging.
They actually get seeded in the child’s little heart strongly and turn into a unbreakable curse. Such a curse cannot be broken by any kind of motivation. The little child expects parents’ approval above all. And here is his parent who has declared him unfit for anything! Similarly a commendation or approval by parents turns into a strong blessing.
During the seventies a poor constable in Tamil Nadu aspired to make her daughter an IAS officer. Those days, considering his poor background and a woman getting into IAS was unimaginable. But he planted his dream in his dear daughter’s heart. Every time he called her, he made it a point to call her’ Collector Amma! Please come!’. He had appointed her as IAS with his words, even while she was a child. Today she is a senior IAS officer as her father blessed her to be. The word turned true.
Jokes are also Words !
Words are words- jokes included. Jokes are also words and there is no escape from its’ consequences. When I joined a prestigious college in Chennai, way back in 1976, freshers were ragged for around a month or so by seniors. While ragging a fresher hailing from a rural background, a senior called him’ Come, fast you son of a b*****d!’. That senior was a product of a well-known Public School in Ooty and it appears that it was quite normal to call so in their school. But the fresher would not buy that and was so offended by the word. He felt that the word insulted his mother and questioned her chastity.
Later the senior was made to apologise for his words. But it did not help heal the hurt. A word spoken cannot be summoned back or swallowed up. The damage is done. It’s like pulling out a bullet from a dead body. The dead body does not come alive. So don’t ever say something bad and later say that you meant it as a joke only.
So What’s your Decision?
Today is the day to take a decision on how you would use your stock of words in future. ‘Yes, I will speak positive words only from today. I will use my words to build, not demolish; to motivate, not to put down; to kiss, not to kill! I know that my words make my world’ If this is your decision, just type’Yes’ in the ‘Comments’ box and be bound by your word!
By: Sundar A.S