Judgement of others is a habit. It comes from the belief in and experience of separateness and it increases separateness.
It is caused by an old faulty belief that the other person is a threat to me and I must be superior so that I am not inferior.
Judgement of others has us in our heads and out of our hearts – it’s kind of cold and distancing.
We also tend to judge ourselves and to expect judgment.
The effect of all this judgement is to squash, disempower and cause feelings of being unlovable and unworthy.
Discernment is different and is an essential quality for us to develop. It is about making a judgement about something or someone but with unconditional love. It is about wisdom and conscious choices and being clear about what is the best for us to do.
Discernment is about making a judgement for the sake of doing what is best and is not at all about criticism or putting the other down.
When we practise discernment we are thinking about things and gathering information so that we make the best possible decisions.
When I made a choice to stop the habit of judging and started to journal about it, I felt like all I did was judge. It seemed like such an automatic response – I couldn’t believe the strength of this negative habit.
It is important to not give yourself a hard time for this but to love and forgive yourself and see it as a victory that you are willing to overcome this habit and want to love yourself and others more.
It does take commitment and practice. I found it very helpful, when I observed that I was going into judgement mode, to consciously get out of my head and into my heart and feel love. I also affirm to myself that I want the best for the other and to help them on their path. Why would I ever seek to harm or disempower another person?
This habit only persists because of faulty beliefs and patterns we have, because we aren’t fully conscious of it and because we have not had the experience of thinking about it and realising how unloving and crippling it is to self and others.
The great and real reward of working to overcome this habit is that you feel more love and compassion. You feel more connected to others and you are clearer about what really matters to you.