“Can you look without the voice in your head commenting, drawing conclusions, comparing, or trying to figure something out?” – Eckhart Tolle
“One reason we rush so quickly to the vulgar satisfactions of judgment, and love to revel in our righteous outrage, is that it spares us from the impotent pain of empathy, and the harder, messier work of understanding.”- Tim Kreider
“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.” – Coco Chanel
It drives me absolutely insane when I feel as though someone is judging someone else’s experience. We don’t walk in anyone else’s shoes but our own, so what right do we have to judge? Have an opinion about? Of course. But act as if we are better than anyone else? Hell, no.
That being said, I went against my own better discernment recently and let myself get sucked into commenting on a friend’s Facebook post. He’d posted a photo of a man who was apparently begging for money, while watching an iPad and had a pack of cigarettes next to him. My FB buddy didn’t think the “beggar” should be asking for money. He felt he was lazy, and clearly should be working. He also deemed him free of mental health issues because he’d talked to him a few times.
I had red alarms going off all over the place in my head.
How do you know what this man has been through?
How do you know how he got the iPad? The cigarettes?
If you care so much about how people spend money that is given to them, why not just NOT give him money?
I was to-the-point with the my first comment. Snarky with my second. Slightly defensive with my third. And fourth.
Then I had the sense to get out of it.
I was judging this friend of mine. I was. I went beyond the opinionated moment and took it to full-fledged judgment. Which, of course, only caused drama. I had stopped being my authentic self and delved into the judgment zone. Just as he has no idea where that man begging for money is coming from, I have no idea where my friend is coming from. I have never walked in his shoes – not once. I don’t know his perspective on the world, and I probably never will.
It is absolutely important to speak about the things we believe in passionately.
It is also equally important to be aware of our audience. Before we speak, for our own sake, as well as for those to whom we speak, we should ponder:
Is what we are saying falling on deaf ears?
Are our words going to make a positive difference somehow?
Are we zapping our energy for no good reason?
All things I should have thought about before I fell into the comment trap. All things I’ll think about next time.
With love and light,
Did this resonate with you? Did you enjoy reading it? Did you learn something? If so, please share! xoxo