Judging people has gotten a bad rep - Àdísà

Judging people has gotten a bad rep. When thinking of being judged or judging someone, we typically view something done as an act of shaming.
This is because we have a tendency to employ unidirectional bias when using certain concepts. For example, when we say we are spiritual or engage in spirituality the assumption (unidirectional bias) is that being spiritual or engaging in spirituality can only exist as positives.
This assumption is erroneous. Being spiritual (spirituality) has to do with a quality of spirit or energy one exhibits. However, being spiritual (and spirituality) is a neutral descriptor it can be good or bad.
It is our unidirectional bias that leads us to assume that spirituality only leans in the definitional direction of good. So much so that when we talk about being spiritual most often the assumption is spiritual is synonymous with a good quality of spirit.
However, being spiritual or engaging in spirituality is about the quality of the spirit (energy) which can be good or bad, negative or positive, divine or evil. And in the case of humans most often both/and rather than either/or
Just as one can have “negative energy” we can engage in negative spirituality or have a negative spiritual disposition.
Yet for most of us when we say we are spiritual or that some are spiritual our assumption is that spiritual means only good. That leads to a unidirectional bias to assume to be spiritual is to be engaged in positivity.
Similarly, when we say things like “I don’t judge” or “don’t judge me” or “only god can judge me” we are doing so from the same kind of unidirectional bias that judging someone is a negative, a wrong.
However, Judging someone (judgement) is can be positive too. When we tell someone they are brilliant, or kind or pretty or talented or a genius, we are actually engaging in a judgement about them. We are, in fact, judging them, offering an appraisal, just from a positive perspective.
And yet, I have never heard anyone upon being told they were brilliant or talented, or attractive say “Don’t judge me!” lol. But that’s exactly what positive appraisals are—judgements.
This suggests that we are socialized to believe critiques or negative appraisals are judgements while missing the point that compliments and positive appraisals are judgements too.
It sets up a dynamic where we see honest critiques as judgements meant to cause us harm while viewing disingenuous praise as a positive appraisal. You don’t build people with strong interiors that way.
What you end up creating are adults so insecure that they can only receive praise and positive appraisals as legitimate and critiques and criticisms as hateration.
In short, you create a society of adults big on extending blame but small on accepting responsibility.
Folks who have an insatiable need to tell is how great they are because they don’t trust themselves enough to simply show their work.
Judgement is a great thing. Indeed it is indispensable to human functioning. Consider human digestion. When you eat, your body engages in a series of judgements as an act of discernment in the form of discrimination, assimilation and elimination.
The absence of good judgement either in terms of what we eat or bodily efficacy can result in…. constipation
Your body makes judgements about what is worth retaining and what should be eliminated.
We tend to think of judging and being judged punitive, as an act of shaming. And there certainly that element. However, at its core judgement when fortified by truth and balance is an act of discernment.
This is why in Kemet (ancient Egypt) the remetch ( the ancient Egyptians) believe that when one died they had to go before the scales of Maat to discern if they had lived a good life or not.
It is Anpu, wearing the head of the jackal that makes the final judgement. Why a jackal?
Well, jackals are known for life-sustaining judgement. Jackal buries their prey so it can decompose enough for it to digest it.
If it eats it too soon it can die and if it lets the carrion decompose too much it can get sick and die from the toxicity. Hence, the jackal must have a kind of judgement that is rooted in balance and truth. (1)
Perhaps the challenge is making sure that in our judgements, in the ways we judge others and the ways we are judged, whether negative or positive, they should seek discernment rooted in truth and balance rather than anchored in shaming.
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