Note from Catherine Carrigan: My dear friend Charlenne Carl shared this article she wrote. I feel it’s so important that I wanted to share with everyone. We can all reflect on Charlenne’s sage observations and ponder how we can become a little less judgmental in our own lives.
Acceptance isn’t just a cause celeb for classes of deprived or oppressed people…like homosexuals, like religious minorities, or refugees, or disabled or a myriad of classes you could name.
You can feel you’re making a contribution to the greater good by being an activist in support of the worthy causes of these classes. And that IS worthy and admirable and does make a difference. We should all be activists based on the personal passions we individually have that engage us and make us feel inspired and inspiring.
But without acceptance in every aspect of life, you are just left with Judgement.
Judgement is simply the barrier to acceptance—of ANY kind. Judgements have negative impact because they inherently are condemnations. Condemnations create a barrier to love and acceptance. Judgements, as condemnations, set barriers between people, nations, and even within our self.
So if acceptance is important in one aspect of our lives, then it is important in ALL aspects of our lives. If we rally for acceptance in one area we need to reject judgement in all areas. And if we feel righteous because we’re not judgemental in one area of our life but continue to hold judgements in other areas, then we’re still prisoners of our own barriers to acceptance.
I want to be sure to distinguish here between making judgements and that of being discerning and differentiating in our views and choices. Discernment and differentiation are how we evaluate and make choices that allow us to expand and grow and develop who we are through the process of evaluation and preferences. That process is a positive one.
As an example: “Having tasted chocolate and vanilla ice cream, I like chocolate.” That’s a differentiation that helps us in future choices to define our life. But if I said “I like chocolate and anyone who likes vanilla has got to be nuts”, then that is a judgement which is negative and creates a barrier. You’ve disdained eaters of vanilla ice cream which will likely result in your avoiding vanilla-eaters, which further separates you from possible opportunities and from getting or giving love and acceptance from those folks.
Making a judgement is a tactic that becomes habit forming and it becomes a way of life. For some, it is a tactic in their strategy to blame others when they experience their shortcomings.
How common is the following progression to becoming an habitually judgemental person?
- That kid’s a jerk
- I HATE spinach
- That teacher is stupid
- My butt is too big / I’m too thin
- I don’t look as good as that person does
- My boss is a jerk
- They should go back to the country they came from
- What a ridiculous way to pray
- That clerk is so inconsiderate
- I can’t believe you’re not going to attend that with me.
- How could you think that that is more important than this.
These samples are global judgements that can be customized many ways to fit any individuals’ personal growth environment. But focused on, and repeated continuously, judgements are a barrier to seeing the other person(s) in another frame. Often re-framing the situation allows one to be the good-finder in all things.
Acceptance is the “Cure” for Judgement. A close ally to Acceptance is Allowing. When you allow others to have their preferences, even when those don’t match yours, that is a foundation to Acceptance.
So now you allow vanilla ice cream eaters to eat without your judgement as you eat and enjoy your chocolate. Now you no longer have created a barrier between yourselves. You’re free to improve your relationship, if desired, without the barrier to love and acceptance.
Every individual is here with their own purpose, their own preferences, their own inspirations, their own timetable. This diversity of individuals is what makes life interesting. It’s the foundation for curiosity, for learning, for growth and development, for love and joy and happiness.
So let’s allow all the individuality to express itself… in our home, our country and on the planet. Let’s accept what other individuals choose while differentiating ourselves and being discerning in our personal choices.
What if EVERYONE stayed in a state of acceptance and allowing?
And as with all Peace, let it begin with me.