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Judgement Isn’t The Problem – It’s Condemnation

Tuesday, April 7, 2015 15:15
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8th April 2015

By Phil Watt

Guest Writer for Wake Up World

‘Judgement’ is considered to be an uncompassionate behaviour in our society, however what this is truly referring to is the condemnation of people or their particular behaviours and values, based on our assessment of them.

Passing judgement on the world around us is a perfectly natural aspect of being human. We continually assess our environment and form opinions on whether we are safe, what response we should have and if we personally resonate with the energy of each given life circumstance.

Ironically we never arrive at an absolute truth either; all we can do is create the best possible estimate of how we think and feel about whatever we are examining.

Judgement isn’t the Problem - it’s Condemnation

Therefore, we all pass judgement – be it positive or negative, independent or comparative, realistic or unrealistic, selfless or selfish, contextual or divisive. Put another way, we continually critique the people and situations in our life, including ourselves, which is why the process we undertake can either be healthy or unhealthy for everybody involved.

Unpacking the Various Forms of Judgement

Let’s discuss an example to best illustrate what is meant by the above concepts. If we have someone in our life that is always gossiping and condemning others, there are many ways we could pass judgement on their behaviour.

A positive judgement would be something like“they might be highly hypocritical, but I also admire their strengths”, whilst a negative judgement might result with “the way that they act is disgusting and therefore I hate them”. Independent judgement takes ourselves out of the picture the best we can, such as “they obviously need help to evolve their mindset, so I hope they eventually get it”, whilst comparative judgement indicates a high personal input: “I would never treat people like that; therefore, I’m better than them”.

Realistic judgement would suggest that “their poor treatment of others might occur due to their lack of self-worth”, and unrealistic judgement would falsely assume that “they’re a bad person who was born like that”. Selfless judgement would be supportive, such as “one day I hope they realize the pain that they cause themselves and others” and selfish judgement might be revengeful, including “I want to cause them as much pain as they have caused others”.

walk-a-mile-in-my-shoesIn addition, contextual judgement incorporates the bigger picture, such as “these sorts of behaviours usually stem from earlier trauma or attachment issues”. Divisive judgement on the other hand separates the behaviour from the complexity of the human condition, and would say “they’re behaviour shows how bad of a person they are”.

Once we work through a case scenario, it’s easy to see how we project our own psychological, emotional and philosophical development into the judgement that we make on other people and their behaviours. For example, anybody who has been involved with relationship conflict – i.e. everybody – has highly likely seen it escalate to an abusive level, such as verbal and emotional violence. Therefore, any condemnation towards people who are guilty of this behaviour is hypocritical because at one or more times in their past this has likely been their own reality.

Acknowledging the Developmental Path

Obviously the closer we get to other people, the more we know about them and the more we can develop a realistic judgement regarding who they are, including their actions. Nevertheless, we’ll never truly know, because it is still filtered through our own sense of truth and morality.

The reality is we have no idea what the truth of another person’s experience actually is. Attempting to understand this is called empathy, or the bid to connect with how they must feel with the circumstances they’ve had. It is therefore not only unrealistic to continually condemn people due to several of their actions; it’s also unhealthy because we plague ourselves with the dysfunction that accompanies a mindset that believes it is superior to others.

Einstein Quote on Judgment - Everybody is a GeniusIn addition, not all of us had supportive and loving upbringings or had opportunities provided to us that easily built up our knowledge and skills in certain areas. The truth is we’re not all dealt the same cards. Just because one person had circumstances which more effortlessly enabled the development of certain aspects of themselves, doesn’t mean that everybody had that same fortune.

But even if another person had it rough and still learned to self-develop into a functional, healthy and consciously-advanced person, they weren’t always that way. We have all gone through revolutions in our thoughts, feelings and behaviours, so we should always appreciate others as being at their particular stage of their own unique path.

If we simply understand that we will always have plenty of ways that we need to develop ourselves, like everybody else, then we envision life as a journey of healing and growth, not as reaching a destination of an ideal self.


Previous articles by Phil Watt:

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  • Pix

    I have no problem with other people believing what ever they like, but when they are not happy until they are finger waging at others, vilifying all and sundry for not believing the same, lobbying government to force their belief on the population, it causes large anti-social problems. They force their anti-social selves onto others making it everyones problem.

    Such people are not believers, they are role playing god so they can do the judging instead. Which in fact proves they do not believe their own BS, because they would not dare do such a thing if they actually believed there is a judgemental god. Your book claims there will be people who preach belief, but deny it’s power.

    Your book advises you to ‘not judge, least you be judged’, which of course the holier than thou then start whining persecution when that happens.. Infantile to say the least.


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