The Sicilian verb, ‘gastimare’ cannot be translated into other languages literally. It has a negative connotation, for it includes backbiting, curse, evil eye, and ill feeling.
The word, cavaddu (horse) is a metaphor for someone you hate. Since you rage mounts more and more, you cast curses against the person you hate, but the more you persist in acting this way, the more healthy and flourishing the one you curse grows.
It is a paradox! The gastima (curse and slander) instead of weakening the cursed one, weakens the one who casts it.
Words have vibrations. While good words are beneficial to everybody, bad words give rise to negative vibrations that poison the mind of the person who utters them.
What is the moral of the proverb? Your curses and backbiting have no effect on your enemy, rather they fortify him. Therefore, you had better talk to him and express your complaints face to face.
Ettore Grillo, author of these books:
– November 2: The Day of the Dead in Sicily (English version)
– A Hidden Sicilian History (English version)
– The Vibrations of Words (English version)
– Travels of the Mind (English version)
– Una Storia Siciliana Nascosta (versione in lingua italiana)
– Viaggi della Mente (versione in lingua italiana)