The Ninth Commandment: Innuendo, the Studied Slight

   Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness Against Thy Neighbor-Exodus 20:16

   "Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation. For 'tis better to be alone than in bad company."—George Washington

   If you spend your time with people who steal it does not mean you are a thief. It just means you sanction the acts of those who steal.

   If you engage your conversation with liars, you may be the sole of discretion. You will, however, spend a great deal of time confused.

   Innuendo is from the Latin and means "to nod at." It was used to introduce the derogatory meaning in libel cases in English courts, so from there came the negative connotation.

   Innuendo. You know about him. Let unsaid is what you know about him but surely you can fill in the blanks. Jesus wants to tear down the Temple you know, we heard Him. Paul is, well, you know about him.

   Innuendo is a death word accompanied with a nod. You cannot totally destroy a reputation if you cannot find agreement. Body language insists on a nod to ask for the acquiescence of one's peers. Innuendo; give the nod.

   A nod to a lie is a lie without the danger of a spoken word. A nod understands how one might need to parse the word "it." A nod agrees with the normalcy of the sin disease in man. No need to think or ask or prolong the discussion. You know about him. Let him be swept away.

   You do not stop the lie until you shake your head. It is hard to shake your head when most others nod.

   Watch your soul. Do not spend your time in the company of the nodders.

   They will tell you to send your money to God. They will give you their own address.

   They will tell you to we can do more together. They will not say exactly what it is we can do but they want to lead, since only they know the way.

   Years ago, a friend of mine sinned a sin. He abandoned holy vows. He went the wrong way.

   I heard this from others. Great was the nodding. You know about him. He has always been this way.

   I ran from the group, called the man, tracked him down, begged him not to fall completely out of service.

   He now heads a well-known religious para-church organization based in West Texas. For all the harm he did and does, he also did and does some good.

   Years later, this man mentioned another friend of mine, David Montoya. He told me, "We are coming out with some stuff on him. You need to distance yourself."

   Again, with the nod.

   I shook my head, ruefully, and replied, "I am not good at running away from people, in particular when someone is about to come out with something on him."

   Take care not to nod too eagerly. or easily.



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