I remember distinctly the urge to judge. I was chatting to a woman about a situation she was involved in and I heard her say something and my mind immediately went into shut down with the voice in my head, saying, “oh man, not this again!”
As that happened, I knew that I was dropping into judgement. The moment I did I withdrew my love and shortly after I walked away to talk with someone else.
When we judge others, that’s the cycle we set up: First we withdraw love. When that happens communication is lost.
Most of us find ourselves in that seat of judgement more times than we want to admit.
Which reminds of this quote by Mother Teresa:
The following evening I asked my prayer partner for a prayer calling forth from me those powers within me I can use to help me stay in love rather than drop down into the world of evidence.
As we prayed my partner said something about ego judging and spirit loving.
From that conversation I came up with a little mantra to remind me, when I find myself slipping into judgement.
“Ego judges, spirit loves.”
Repeat until the need to judge passes.
You are welcome to take it and make it your own.
When I understand where judgement rises up from, I can simply acknowledge the thought and let it slip away or imagine the thought is a balloon than pops when you shine the light of awareness upon it.
Our goal shouldn’t be to eliminate judgement, because that path leads to our own suffering. Rather when we shift away from our own pattern of judgement through mindfulness to a place of love, we enter into a state of grace.
The great Persian poet Rumi, put it this way.
Wouldn’t you like to get to that field?
Pattern interrupt is a classic method for changing a long-held pattern such as an eagerness to rush to judgement. This is a mindfulness approach that help build your awareness muscle.
It works this way. When you notice the thoughts of judgement rising within you, you interrupt the pattern with how you want to show up. As an example say:
“Stop! That’s just an old pattern resurfacing. That’s not who I am now. I am a loving being filled with compassion and understanding.”
Another track would be to remember this simple Wayne Dyer quote:
If I understood that my judgement defines me rather than the person judged, this would give me pause.
Would realizing you are defining yourself make you reconsider your thinking?
That pause might give us the time to reflect that our judgement is just another thought floating up into our consciousness from our ego mind, with all its assumptions and attachment fully formed. We recognize we lack clarity and the depth of wisdom required for passing judgement on another.
Tolle links non-judgement along with two other aspect for living an enlightened life to help us form a boarder picture.
Another way to help develop a non judgement attitude is to keep in mind simple examples of how arbitrary judgement can be. This is what A.A. Milne reminds us with this quote from his gentle stories of Winnie the Pooh.
As we set our intention each day to be the best version of us we can be , we are on a journey of rediscovery back to the perfect beings we truly are. We need to live in the spirit of Pooh Bear if you will. To apply non judgement to our own skins. We are harsh judges of ourselves and need to extend to ourselves the same love and understanding.
Our quiet gifts will show us the way.
What other strategies can you use to achieve a non-judgmental state?