I'm looking for practical tips on how to avoid believing lashon hara told by someone whom I usually trust and respect.
Deuteronomy 19:15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any
iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of
two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be
While the law speaks to judicial matters, the principle might be appropriated. If one persons tells you you are sick, forget it. If two people tell you you are sick, lie down.
A technique to reduce the impact of unreliable information is to establish levels of processing new information.
- Could such information be true?
- Would this be consistent with other things I know?
- Is this something that is essential for me to consider as true right now?
- Should I "shelve" this information until it can be corroborated?
Advertisers would love it if you went right from hearing something to believing it. Even from a trustworthy friend, it is beneficial to be somewhat skeptical. Even people you trust can pass along information which they believe to be true or information which they have mistakenly accepted with real sincerity.