Calumny is only the noise of madmen.

What did Diogenes mean by:

Calumny is only the noise of madmen.


“Calumny is only the noise of madmen” is a statement that highlights the insignificance and absurdity of false accusations or slander. Calumny, a term for false and malicious statements intended to damage someone’s reputation, is compared to the noise of madmen, implying that it’s irrational, senseless, and should be disregarded. The quote suggests that those who resort to calumny are not in their right senses, as it takes a certain level of irrationality to spread harmful untruths about others.

Applying this idea in today’s world, particularly in the era of social media, it’s not uncommon to see character assassinations, false rumors, and misinformation spread rapidly. This quote serves as a reminder to discern the credibility of such information and the sanity of those who propagate it. Rather than being swayed by every rumor, we should question its source and authenticity.

In terms of personal development, the quote encourages us to focus on truth and rationality. It discourages us from engaging in slander or paying heed to it. It pushes us to develop a character that values truth over gossip and to cultivate the wisdom to distinguish between the two. It also teaches resilience, as we may be the target of calumny at some point. Understanding that such slander is ‘only the noise of madmen’ can help us remain unaffected by it, thus maintaining our peace of mind and integrity.

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