Is being judgmental really bad?

Actually no. While Matthew 7 advocates that we should not judge, I think the key point in this passage is not to judge hypocritically.

We are told not to be quick to judge. In some sense, restraining our judgment helps us to prevent the blunder of judging others hypocritically. However, I think that there should be room for authentic judgment.

Also, could being judgmental be some form of defensive mechanics that is natural for human beings?

As finite beings, we have limited comprehension of the world. We make prejudgments to help us conceptualize and simplify this complex world and also to protect ourselves from the evil tendencies of human nature. Making judgment and pointing the finger outward is probably the easiest form of attribution to maintain mental equilibrium in ourĀ  understanding of what has happened.

By starting from seeing mankind as God’s creation and loved by Him, we then gradually learn to relax our prejudgment about our fellow counterparts and open our minds to see and appreciate the beauty in others.

As we mature, we gradually drop our preconceptions, accommodate and assimilate the complexity of the world.

Making judgment that hurts and attack others is definitely not good. But I do not think making judgment is a bad thing if it is used as a defense. Again, it boils down to the principle of loving one another. If your judgment is for the intent of loving yourself, then being judgmental can be justified. But if your judgment is careless to hurt another, then it should be restrained.

confusing selfcare vs selfish. cf. Parker Palmer on selfcare is never selfish.

Consider Piaget’s theory of constructivism and how humans develop from egocentrism to sociocentrism. Constructivist theory suggests the ‘naturalness’ for humans to conceive prejudgment as it serves to maintain a state of mental equilibrium to the things they cannot comprehend or are not certain. We cannot help but make prejudgment and conceptions to establish reasonable meaning for ourselves before we can move on. Essentially, young children believe that those who have a different perception than their own are either considered false or nonexistent.

We cannot not judge. It’s part of our neurology, it’s part of the hard wiring, we all judge each other. – Andrew Bryant

Do not judge? Is it not because of critiques that people learn from one another? What of righteous anger? I have already passed judgment to annoying people. (but should I stop to consider whether that person is aware that he annoying to others?)

Do not gossip? ie. talk bad about others without sufficient evidence. or talk bad about others based on bringing up past mistakes which can be forgiven. Again, it boils down to love. Is your judgment or gossip for the sake of love and overall good of self and others? We are faced the paradoxical tension between judging because it can be good and not judging because we are myopic and ignorant.

When someone is being annoying and you have no influence on the other, you should make judgment on the other to protect yourself or society, but if you are trying to love and change that annoying other, then judging is not going to be much help for him.

judging vs discerning, judging vs deducing. so fine is the line between them.

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