Questioner: Sometimes when we see the view-point of the other person as wrong, then our speech becomes harsh.
Dadashri: It is because you perceive things incorrectly that your speech comes out wrong. The prejudices and opinions of ‘It is bad, It is wrong,’ get in the way and your speech comes out harsh.
The one who wants liberation, should not insist, ‘This is what needs to be done, and this is how it has to be done.’ Work towards a conclusion whichever way you can, without any insistence, and move ahead.
A man used to sell bangles for a living. He transported his goods in a large basket on the back of a donkey. As he approached the local market, he would shout, ‘Shoo Gadhedi (Gujarati word for a female donkey), move it!’ One man stopped him and told him not to say, ‘Gadhedi’ when he addressed the donkey because it would offend the women in the market who may think he was talking to them instead of the donkey. The vendor acknowledged this and admitted that such an incident had indeed occurred previously for which he had to do a lot of explaining. He asked the man how he could change this habit of his and the man suggested that instead of calling her, ‘Gadhedi’, he should address her in polite terms like, ‘Mother,’ or ‘Sister’. By addressing the donkey politely, even the donkey would appreciate it. Although these animals cannot speak they can sense your attitude and good intentions.
So this is how it can be changed! If you experiment, your speech will change. Once you understand what is beneficial and what is harmful, changes are possible.
If I decide that, ‘I want to speak words that will hurt no living being, no religion and the foundation of any religion’, such intentions will produce syaadvaad speech (speech that hurts no one).
Questioner: If in the present life, one keeps mechanically reciting that he wants his speech to be sweet and pleasant to all living beings (syaadvaad), will it happen?
Dadashri: Only if he says it after understanding the definition of syaadvaad. How can you benefit from it when you do not understand what it means?
Only those who speak with focused awareness (upayoga) will have good speech and no one except the Gnani speaks with focused awareness. It is possible for those who have acquired Gnan to speak with such awareness. If they make the effort (purushaarth), they can have this awareness during their speech, because their true purushaarth only begins after they become a Purush (the Self); otherwise true purushaarth is not possible.