With respect to the broader belief in India, I can say I come from an open minded family but this doesn’t go well with many people around me.
Post marriage I shifted to a building where mostly women were housewives, and because I was working, they started judging me and worst was their criteria for judging me – my dress, my comfort with men (background I am the only girl in my family) and my drinking habit.
Initially it started to bother me badly then lately I realized that it is their view and it should not matter to me as I believe in the saying that reputation is different than the character.
But I won’t deny it took a toll on my mental health once they started spreading wrong rumors about me in the neighborhood. I thought of clarifying my position and wanted to show them who the real ME is then I gave a second thought and felt I don’t owe any explanation and if someone needs to genuinely know me, they will put efforts. (this was my ego I thought but realized recently it was my self respect, though the line is quite blurred between these two).
But this incident taught me something very important that when we judge people it is hardly that our judgement is positive for the other person.
And we also become so irresponsible that we do not even think of the consequences their judgement can have.
The people who judge others may not even realize that the other person may not be able to repair the damage the judgement must have caused. And in this digital world we are living in, any casual remark about anyone can lead to devastating consequences as everyone is not mentally strong or prepared enough to take the wrong opinion of others.
However I want to say here to all those people who are quick to judge please follow few things before judging others (if I say do not judge that’s so impractical these days 🙂
Firstly try to know the real facts– Do not judge others without cross checking the facts. Do not form an opinion about anyone based on someone else’s opinion.
Learn to be open minded– World and life is beyond our understanding. We may be having limited view of the world, so learn to be open minded to accept other aspects of life and people too. (do not be a frog in the well. )
Do not mix your judgement – A professional person may be absolutely a different personality in his personal life and vice versa.
Do not decide criteria– In this competitive world we do feel the need to judge others but we need to keep it in limit and should not have a checklist to judge them.
For eg if you are an HR professional you have full right to judge the candidate on his professional abilities, past experiences, his skills to suit the company’s requirement but if you start judging him on the basis of his surname, religion, accent then that will be kind of injustice to that candidate.
I have understood one thing in all these years that beyond a certain limit all judgement will fail because human mind flows like water in a river and that is why we can see that our opinion changes about others so easily. Not just humans even countries across the world also works in similar fashion. Bright example is US-Iran (from friends to enemy) or US- Vietnam relations (from enemy to friends).
Before judging someone we also need to give them a benefit of doubt for our mental peace as we too get disturbed when the other person does something which is not acceptable to us, due to our limited exposure. As no one gets up in the morning thinking I have to create problem in the other person’s life (until unless your are husband and wife :0) so we can be bit chilled in our approach.
The best cure for being non-judgmental is in the words of J Krishnamurty “the ability to observe without evaluating is the highest form of intelligence”.
So let us try to observe more than judging people, learn to be kind and compassionate.
And what if someone judges us: Just Chill… let them do what they want. Just we should ensure that we are not hurting anyone with our thoughts, words and actions. Rest nature will take care of everything.
Jai Sri Hari.
Image by John Hain from Pixabay