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Posts Tagged ‘right and wrong’

Judgment

Our dear friend Françoise recently shared on this blog that how we perceive our personal challenges can lead to internal suffering. She illuminated the idea for me that misperception is entwined with judgment. It stems from the self, making a prison of our own design.

To quote Francoise: “We are meaning-making machines, and when we judge anything to be bad or good, we only define ourselves.” I think this is so true. we are trained in our society to be for or against situations, ourselves, and each other. We separate what we see into good and bad, making one person right and another wrong. We form negative and positive judgments that include one human only to exclude  the other – hero versus villain, golden child vs. black sheep, and us vs. them. Neither position sits well with the soul.

Peace mediator Dr. Marshall Rosenberg writes: “Sadly, we’ve been educated for all these years in this world of moralistic judgments; of retributive justice; of punishment, reward, and “deserve.” We’ve internalized this language of judgments, and it’s hard for us to stay connected to the beauty of what we are within that framework.” In this way, judgment perpetuates conflict.

Many schools of wisdom teach us to embody compassion, or the opposite of judgment, so that we can live in spiritual peace. They teach us to take charge of our thoughts and stop reactive thinking. Because when we think about anything and categorize it into our minds, we tend to form opinions. We begin to make assumptions that reflect our own desires and issues. And our egos believe they are the truth.

Our judgments gain momentum as we get emotionally attached to what we tell ourselves. And pretty soon, we start criticizing others in order to defend our misperceptions. This is how judgment takes flight in our conversations and relationships, and how it causes suffering. But judgment is only a creation of the mind and a projection of the self.

I believe that self-judgment is responsible for the judgments we place on others, but self-love provides the solution. By learning to fully love every part of ourselves, we lose the desire to hurt ourselves. This means we no longer need to hurt others. We then know how to empathize completely with the people we encounter and no longer find the need to judge them. We recognize judgment and choose to disengage.

It’s important to realize that when we judge, we are asking others to fulfill our judgments. We are closing our hearts and narrowing our experience, and this disconnects us from our fellow humans and from divine possibilities of joy and illumination. When we judge, we suffer, adding to the conflict on our planet.

You see, every time that I compare one human to another, and especially to myself, I limit myself with judgement. But how can we compare when we are each one of a kind? We are growing in diverse ways and will never find sameness. Instead, we can accept and respect each person in their entirety, allowing them to be exactly as they are. We can notice their unique abilities and gifts. We can recognize the spiritual beauty within everyone.

The conditional love of judgment creates inhuman standards. We will never be able to meet them. But our judgments are not us. As shaman Dr. Don Miguel Ruiz teaches, they are simply stories, and we have the power to let them go.

When we recognize another’s conditioning and see our own judgment in turn, we find that judgment is only a charade. We become more responsible with our energy by choosing to appreciate rather than criticize.

Ruiz tells us that love is the antidote to judgment. It is the real reality beyond rampant thoughts. Love reminds us to simply observe with acceptance instead of exchanging judgment.

Letting go of judgment brings incredible freedom. When we remove judgment from our lives, we become open to unconditional love. I believe that this is what we are here to learn from this challenging human experience.

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