February 4

Today's quotation:

When you feel offended, you're practicing judgment. . . .
What you may not realize is that when you judge another
person, you do not define them.  You define yourself
as someone who needs to judge others.

Wayne Dyer

Today's Meditation:

Judge not and you won't be judged--we've all heard the saying many times, but how often do we take to heart the first two words?  These first two words, if followed, could relieve us of more stress and anxiety than we possibly can imagine, for letting go of our tendency to judge others allows us to free ourselves from our need to be right all the time, from our need to control situations by making sure they come out the way we think they should come out.

Judgment is nothing more than our way of saying that someone doesn't live up to our expectations.  They're not doing things the way we think they should do them, and it makes us feel pretty good to be able to judge someone else's words or actions--for then we're "right," and they're "wrong."  It's nice to be right, isn't it?

But Wayne's words are very profound.  When we judge other people, we're defining ourselves as someone who needs to judge others.  Is this a healthy need?  Are our judgments necessarily valid or accurate?  If we keep on defining ourselves in this way, will we ever become people who truly "live and let live"?  Letting someone else live life according to his or her own muse or muses is one of the greatest gifts we can give someone else; why don't we do it more often?

And is it possible to love unconditionally if we are people who need to judge others?  I think not. . . .

Questions to consider:

Where do we get the tendency to need and/or want to judge others?

What would life be like if we were able to give up judging other human beings for doing things the way they think is right?

Do people judge you?  How does that make you feel?  Do you make others feel that way when you judge them?

For further thought:

When you are interested in other perspectives, it doesn’t imply,
even slightly, that you’re advocating them.  I certainly wouldn’t
choose a punk rock lifestyle or suggest it to anyone else.  At the
same time, however, it’s really not my place to judge it either.
One of the cardinal rules of joyful living is that judging others
takes a great deal of energy and, without exception,
pulls you away from where you want to be.

Richard Carlson



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