When we hear about genocides, homicides, wars, we are in shock, become angry, feel sorrow. How can humans turn on humans like this?
Look around! It’s happening right next to you, to your neighbor, to your family member and yes you may be a victim but you’ve also stood on the criminal plank.
You are turning on a human every time you judge a girl for dressing differently than you. Criticize a boy for not “manning up.” Everytime you give that judgmental look to a new mother who chooses formula instead of breast-feeding.
Yes, I realize these may not be as severe as genocides or murders, but don’t these moments of blaming and shaming other humans lead to segregation, separation, and violence.
We are all here in this beautiful place called life. Called to exist as humans. Every day we get up we are lucky. Some people don’t have the chance to be on earth. To clear their karmas, serve their dharmas. This life is a lesson but more this life is a stepping stone to the divine.
Is the path to the divine a rat race? A competitive playing field where you are stoned for having the courage to think outside the box? Is it a jail where you are outcasted for choosing a path that is least traveled?
I’m not sure about a lot of things, but one thing I’m sure of is my faith. And my faith tells me no way! The path to the divine is where we learn to forgive, accept, love ourselves so that we can understand another human’s journey, and accept that we are all one.
We don’t get to leave this life with trophies in our pockets and medals around our necks.
And the last time I checked I didn’t get a medal for the way I chose to deliver my baby or for the work I put into my marriage or for the number of points over passing I got on my boards.
So why are we measuring up others to these unnecessary standards?
We are all human. We all get to choose moment to moment who we want to be. We are here to learn our lessons and we leave here with hopefully more love and peace and vitality of spirit…that is the only badge of honor we get to keep in our souls.
I say this knowing that I myself have been the criminal of judgment, criticism, blame. I have looked at a mom at the airport, when her kid is wailing for her as the teenage sister or babysitter holds the baby, judging her for not holding her own baby. Creating a story for her life, she looks young enough to be the sister, rather than a mom. Maybe she’s not even the mother.
At the same time I remember when my own baby was crying in a 3 hour flight from Puerto Rico and would go to no one else and all I wanted was for someone else to hold her. To give me even if for one minute a break from the shrieking deafening cries coming directly from her mouth to my ears.
I have felt the shame of feeling like a bad mother as the stewardess gives me that look of pity mixed in with control your kid and as my own father said “that was kind if a nightmare,” coming off the plane.
So why then last week was I making mental judgments of this mother who probably just needed a break?
Good for you girlfriend for having the courage to flip off all the criticizing looks from passengers and giving yourself a that much needed break as you let the other girl help you with the baby.
This is Life. To each her own. Live and let live.
I think if I repeat these 3 simple mantras everytime I find myself giving someone a criticizing look I start to deal with my own shame. I learn to accept that we are all on this path of life and it’s much more pleasant to see it as a journey rather than a battlefield.
Just do yo thang and have the courage to let others to the same! Because in the end, no one makes it out of here alive.
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