Judgment

It’s so easy to judge others, isn’t it? So much so, that it often happens before we even realize it. Someone cuts us off on the road, and we immediately recognize them as an “ass hole” or a “friggin moron!” It’s an unmistakable classification of humanoids, of course, distinguishable by their lack of charity or awareness of any other species in their vicinity. And because we’ve defined them as such by their behaviour, we are justified in our judgment. It’s a “righteous judgment” of sorts, just like anyone who drives faster than us is an idiot, and anyone who drives slower than us is a moron.

Then we have the rude people at the supermarket who stop to look at something with their shopping cart blocking the entire aisle, oblivious to the existence of any other humans in the store. They, of course, are Jack Asses.

On and on it goes through our days, from one day on to the next. People do something that we perceive as “wrong,” we pronounce immediate judgment in our minds, classify them in a specific category of nuisance, and merrily roll along knowing that we’ve been justified in our judgment because we were somehow “wronged.”

Trust me; I’m no different when it comes to this. I am (like most people) especially brave while in the car, windows rolled up, when they can’t hear me and probably can’t even see me. I can let loose with language that rolls out of my mouth like I’m speaking in tongues. In fact, I still remember this one incidence when I was driving to New York to visit Mummy. We’d just gotten through the Lincoln Tunnel and there was heavy traffic. I’d called Mummy to let her know we were through the tunnel and would be there in about 15 minutes (I was wearing my Bluetooth headset like a very good driver). We were stopped at an intersection when our light turned green. I proceeded through, only to have a large bus drive through his red light, and come across my path, cutting me off.

Well, I did what any red-blooded American would do from Philadelphia: I hit the horn, and pushed my way through, while screaming obscenities at the evil bus driver (joined, of course, by my two travel companions). Sadly, we’d lost the fight and the bus blocked us off and we had to wait for the next light. In the mean time, there was a little voice in my ear saying (in a very proper British accent), “Oh dear… What happened?”

That’s when I realized Mummy was still on the phone… and heard everything… She giggled and said, “I can tell you’re from Philadelphia. No one from New York would ever argue with a bus!”

Sometimes we act like animals. Or like we’re still in kindergarten (Or is that the same thing?). We’re supposed to learn through our school years how to act in public and with other people. We’re supposed to learn proper etiquette and how to deal with other people when we feel we’ve been wronged. We learn to discuss the issues instead of spitting and hitting others, yet in reality, we’ve mostly never left kindergarten! If we but put ourselves in the other person’s shoes for a split second to give them the benefit of the doubt, it suddenly puts everything into a different perspective. What if that person who cut us off on the road honestly didn’t see us? After all, there have been times when I accidentally cut someone off (of course, in my justifiable judgment of them at the time, they were the ass-hole for honking their horn at me, because I didn’t see them!).

You see how that works?

Or what about that person in the store that was being nasty with you? Maybe they were just diagnosed with a serious illness, or maybe someone cut them off on their way in to work, or their spouse left them, or their mother just died, or… There are so many reasons that make people act and react the way they do – the same reasons that make us act the way we do. And if we’ll accept any reasons for ourselves to be nasty with anyone else, why can’t we accept them for others?

Advertisements