On Letting Go of Judgment
Everyone judges. When you think, much of the time you are analyzing things; judging. When you see someone on the street, the judgment is there even before you think: ‘fat, bald, ugly, HOT, dumb, tiny,’ etc. Everything gets a label. And each label begets a feeling.
Critical thinking, evaluating, analyzing, rationalizing, sticking to logic; it was everywhere in our schooling, and it is branded into the structure of our brains. It overwhelms the spiritual anatomy sought by Christ’s command – to ‘judge not, lest ye be judged yourself.’ Instead, we’re always judging.
How could you let go of judgment? How do you let go of what you are? How do you let go of who you are? If you stop judging altogether, how can you even have an identity?
These types of questions can stress out a spiritual traveler big time. All you want to do is spread love, but this judgment thing is always there, even when you’re not aware of it, getting in the way of living a holy life.
So instead of letting go of judgment, what some people do is hold on tighter and hate themselves instead. Basically, you start to judge yourself for judging.
I’ve struggled with this myself. And I have found that the best thing I can do in the case I catch myself judging, or judging my own judging, is to remind myself of the following.
I remind myself that “bad energy” travels in circles. Negativity comes right back to you when you send it out. Okay, that’s basic, it’s the law of karma. But check this: if you judge yourself, as all of us do, you are perpetuating that circle inside yourself. Self-loathing, guilt, shame, fear, insecurity, these all come from this same problem, from holding on to judgment and the negative feelings you associate with it.
Now, if you simply (*cough* simply) accept the fact that you are hard-wired to be judgmental, you can actually forgive yourself for doing it. You can stop the wheel or circle of karma within yourself. Every time you see a label crossing your mind, you can let go of it, step back and open up to what you have just been judging.
So, in the end, you can’t let go of judgment wholesale. But you can let go of judging judgment and all of the shit that comes with it. You can recognize your thoughts and feelings (say “hello thoughts and feelings!”), forgive them, and move on by loving them unconditionally. If you can keep this up, you will break down barriers to having an open heart and mind everyday. I judge that to be a good and worthwhile business.