“It is not for me to judge another man’s life. I must judge, I must choose, I must spurn, purely for myself. For myself, alone” Hermann Hesse
Look at her terrible hair. What the hell is she thinking?
I bet he’s a total arsehole.
Homeless, Lazy bum. Probably addicted to glue.
Slutty underage Mum. Poor kid will grow up the same.
Have you ever noticed your tendency to negatively judge other people? You might not say these things aloud. Maybe you do, but mostly your gut reaction to people you encounter is horribly negative.
We do this habitually. I’d go so far as to say it’s our default programme that we run unless we have deliberately written some other routine to play instead. It’s funny to me how we perceive faults and failings in others that seem to mirror what we perceive to be our better qualities. If someone view someone as fat, lazy and ugly it is because we consider ourself thin, hardworking and attractive.
But, judgement is just a mental delusion. Its simply a statement of insecurity.
I see the man I don’t know.
Is he homeless? Who knows?
Is he a drug addicted petty criminal? Certainly a rash judgement, based only on my own perceptions.
Truth be told I am no better, no smarter and no more valuable to society. We are both playing our role in our journey in the world.
He will have good ideas, dreams, friends, passions, fears and hopes. Just like me. Really we are the same, but for slightly different preferences and characteristics all drawn from the same cultural narrative.
For all I know this soul could be an esteemed professor so ensconced in his research, and so near a major scientific breakthrough, that he has forgotten to shower toady. Perhaps he is grieving the loss of his wife who passed on the weekend. Maybe he is a truly enlightened being that has come to appreciate that he is not this temporary flesh suit we call the body.
All I really know is that I don’t know. I know that I need not judge. There is no value for me or for others, no purpose, no benefit.
Doesn’t mean I won’t. But when I find myself entering a judgmental frame I smile and I make a promise to myself that if there is an opportunity to express kindness to this person I shall take it.