In Gabrielle Bernstein's book Judgment Detox, judgment is defined as a separation from love. She states, "The moment that we see ourselves as separate from anyone else, we detour into a false belief system that is out of alignment with our true nature, which is love." Gabby suggests that we all have the same problem, that we have separated from love and that the solution is to return to love.
Being judgmental comes from a place of ego. Our ego operates from a place of fear. It thinks it's helping us to survive and protecting us. The ego loves to judge, to cast blame and find fault.
Judgment causes us to get stuck in a cycle, an addictive habit-forming pattern. It temporarily makes us feel better about ourselves, but ultimately makes feel bad. Judgment lowers our vibration and our energy and it makes us feel alone. Gossip is a great example, it can give us a temporary high until we crash with a judgment hangover.
According to Gabby, "The way out of judgment begins when you witness the judgment without more judgment. When we look at our judgment with love, we can begin the healing process. We have to see clearly the ways in which we separate from love, and we have to get honest about the dark corners of our mind." We all have those dark corners of our mind don't we?
For me the beginning of my way out of judgment began with recognizing and understanding fear and through the practices of empathy and self-compassion. Bringing awareness to and being mindful of my judgments, not just blindly going about life without concern for them. Then moving into the practice of empathy with the understanding that everyone has their own lens through which they see the world based on their life experiences, it is their truth. When I become aware that I am judging myself, I exercise self-compassion.
Mindfulness, awareness, empathy and self-compassion are key tools that I've been using to release judgmental thoughts. It's also been helpful for me to relinquish the need to judge, the need to cast something as either right or wrong. Just relieving myself of the "responsibility" of judging and needing to blame or put someone or something in a column of either being right or being wrong.
We often misinterpret reality, we misinterpret another person, misinterpret a situation. We misinterpret things because we see them through the conditioning of our own mind. You see it through your beliefs, your experiences, your childhood, etc. The ego loves to make someone wrong, to judge them. The ego creates a narrative that strengthens the more your tell it. Fictitious narratives spinning around in our head as reality.
I am a work in progress. Everyday setting the intention to break the addictive cycle of judgment against myself and others. Life is happier and more peaceful when we can let go of the "responsibility" of judging.