Galen Pearl

Galen Pearl

I’m Here to Love You

“Judge not,” said Jesus. Two words, not hard to understand. Yet, by all appearances, almost impossible to obey, even by, sometimes especially by, those who claim to follow the teacher who said them.

I don’t think this teaching discourages using good judgment or discernment. I think it is cautioning us against setting ourselves apart by judging others, rather than building bridges and finding common ground in our shared humanity.

And why is judging discouraged? Jesus explains: “Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.”

Some interpret this as a threat by a deity, promising retribution for disobedience. But perhaps it is simply an observation of cause and effect, along the lines of you reap what you sow. The world will reflect back to us what we project onto it. The judgment of fault that I attach to someone else in some way mirrors something that I reject within myself.

For me, it’s even simpler than that. Judging doesn’t make me happy. That’s enough reason right there for me to start catching myself in judgment mode and redirect. And how do I do that? Lately, this phrase has been helpful to me:

I’m not here to judge you. I’m here to love you.

Sometimes I’ve said it out loud to someone who is perceiving judgment, ready to fight back in defense. It’s pretty amazing how that little phrase can defuse tension and shift energy. A closed fist becomes an open hand. Sometimes I just say it to myself when my thoughts are roiling in judgmental agitation. Calm descends. Breath slows and deepens. Peace flows.

I am reminded that my job on this plane of existence is not to figure out what everyone else should be doing and insist that they do it. My job is to rest in the eternal heart of the Beloved, trusting all, embracing all, loving all. Only that.

I have no purpose for today except to look upon a liberated world, set free from all the judgments I have made. ~A Course in Miracles

8 thoughts on “I’m Here to Love You”

  1. esther elizabeth

    Well said — I am reminded that my job on this plane of existence is not to figure out what everyone else should be doing and insist that they do it. My job is to rest in the eternal heart of the Beloved, trusting all, embracing all, loving all. Only that.

    1. Passing judgement on someone else has the effect of elevating yourself to a position that implies superiority over others.

      That attitude is at the root of our current political and societal turmoil. I can strongly disagree with someone on a subject. But, if I assume their words come from a place of true conviction, then to judge them must mean I believe myself to have greater understanding and intelligence, not simply that their interpretation of the situation is different from mine.

      I can work to engage them in a discussion and try to understand what drives them to that feeling. But, I should not assign dark or evil intentions.

      Unfortunately, everything said so far rarely descibes my actual reaction,which does lean toward judgement. That character flaw is a constant work in progress.

      1. Life is a work in progress, isn’t it, Bob? Always unfolding, always shifting, evolving, moving. If judging others reflects self-judgment, then we often judge ourselves most harshly. So perhaps we can start with not judging ourselves but rather loving ourselves. And then that will naturally be manifested outward. Thanks for commenting.

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