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Lashon Hara


I was recently in a conversation where someone was talking to another person about a very mean girl. They didn’t mention names but I knew who this person was talking about. She didn’t know I knew and she just continued talking about her. I’m going to a simcha where she will be there the whole time, and it’s going to be hard not to think about all I’ve heard of her when I see her. Should I believe the lashon hara I’ve heard? After all, the person who said the Lashon Hara is very trustworthy, so I feel stuck. What should I do?




We are forbidden to accept the lashon hora that we hear. This is even if the person saying it, is usually a trustworthy person. When speaking lashon hora, it is very difficult for a person to say things exactly as they were, and usually the person unwittingly ends up embellishing their story, so that the negative effect gets dramatized. It is brought from the Chofetz Chaim (see Dirshu edition of the Chofetz Chaim Biurim Umusafim- Hilchos Lashon Hora Klal 6 footnote 2) that it is known regarding people who speak lashon hora “most of them are liars, and all of them aggagerate”. Therefore, even if it is possible that something similar to what was said happened, but most of the time, when a story is exaggerated, it takes on a whole different appearance, and can sound very different from what actually happened. This is why, even though the person who said it is usually a trustworthy person, regarding the lashon hora we can not and may not trust them. Also see Shmiras Halashon Shar Hazechira 12

Best wishes


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