Monday, April 21, 2008

Judgments---Discernment Or Prejudice?

This article was inspired by Reverend Bea Arline's sermon at Christway Unity Church, Hot Springs, Arkansas on April 20, 2008.

What do your judgments say about you?

With your judgments, are you being discerning---seeing reality for what it really is? Or, are you expressing personal prejudices?

Are you allowing those judgments to guide you away from negative people and situations or are they dragging you down into anger, fear and hatred?

Are you using judgment to disconnect with your own shadow side by projecting it off onto others that you are then judging as bad, as less than you?

Are your judgments helping you to see what is or are they allowing the ego to keep you separated into "them against me"?

Judgment, as discernment, helps you to see others as they really are, not as you want them to be. Discernment can also help you to see yourself as you really are, rather than the fairy tale image that you would like to be. Discernment can keep you out of harm's way. It can keep you real.

Take off your rose colored glasses and look at the world through discernment rather than prejudice. Reclaim the shadow part of yourself with love and acceptance, then change what you don't like rather than projecting it on to others.

I ask to be guided to release judgments that may harm me or others. I ask to become more aware of discernments that may protect me or others from harm. I ask that this be done for the highest good of all concerned. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Reverend Bea's closing words were, "We often have wisdom missing from our judgments."
Patricia Singleton


MichelleVan said...


I love this explanation of discernment rather than judgment. Isn't the point to pay attention to our intuition and know how to proceed - perhaps with a judgment that is justified?

BTW: CK tagged you in her last post...

Patricia Singleton said...

Michelle, wouldn't it be grand if more of us paid attention to our intuition and followed it more. Thanks for letting me know about CK's article.

Nneka said...

Hi Patricia, that question used to bug me at the Unity church that I go to here. This idea of non-judgment equating to blind acceptance of all that is in your life. I didn't get it for a long time. I stayed in my marriage for about 3 years too long because I didn't know how to be accepting and non-judgmental. Finally I gave into judging.

At first, I was very prejudicial and black and white. Today I realize that it's more a matter of going with the choice that is in alignment with who I am. I ask myself if this person, activity, or situation is in alignment with who I am? If not, I ask what they are here to give me. I open myself to the gift and they phase out easily.

Byron Katie's Loving What Is, has also helped me a lot with the questions of acceptance and judgment.

In Spirit,

Patricia Singleton said...

Nneka, that is a very good example of the journey that I find myself going through when I look at my judgments. I don't do blind acceptance very well either. Discernment very often requires action from us. Getting out of harms way is very often what it requires. Thanks for your comment.

Karl - Your Work Happiness Matters said...

Hey Patricia,
There are times that I think that I'm using wisdom when I'm judging, but then I look back and see the mistakes I made. It takes a lot of discipline and practice to not let absent minded judgments to lead my thoughts. I was wondering what do you do to stay aware of these judgments and not let them take over your emotions?
Thanks, Karl

Patricia Singleton said...

Karl, I am no saint. I am not claiming, by writing this article, that I am always aware of the difference. Sometimes I have the objectivity to see the difference in myself and sometimes, I am too emotionally involved to know or care. Life is about learning from the mistakes that we make.

I am not always aware of my judgments as being prejudices. I am not always aware that my judgments are being discerning instead. I am still learning to be discerning rather than prejudiced. I would think that as long as we have an ego, we will still find prejudices. The secret is to not act on those prejudices and to see them for what they are. When you see prejudice for what it is, then you can let go of it before doing harm to anyone. As a society, we still have a long way to go in releasing our prejudices.

I still struggle with prejudice. My article is not to make others think that I do it prefectly or that I am any better than you. I am not. I am simply sharing the awareness that I have learned. I believe awareness is the first step to any and all change.

I don't know if I answered your question or not. I don't have all of the answers. I am just beginning to see my way through this one myself. Does anyone else have any answers that you would like to share for Karl's question?

Karl - Your Work Happiness Matters said...

Patricia, your answer was perfect. We are all discovering our own way and some days it seems like a forest and other days like a sunny meadow. I'm still working on seeing life for what it is and not what I want it to be. I guess we all have our own judgments that we need to work on individually.

Patricia Singleton said...

Karl, not perfect, by any means, but done to the best of my ability today. Have a glorious day.

Brenda said...

I appreciate the questions you list here as a double-check on our intentions. Good stuff!

Patricia Singleton said...

Brenda, I am glad that you like the questions. I always hope that my articles will keep my readers asking themselves questions and thinking about the answers. I ask myself those same questions. Sometimes the answers can be quite surprising and lead me in directions that I didn't know that I needed to go in.

isabella mori said...

thanks, patricia, that was very useful. discernment is about clarity; what we refer to as judgment muddles my mind.

i remember a conversation a few years ago where someone said that we don't need to - well, judge the word judgment so heavily. when we think of a wise and compassionate judge, it doesn't weigh that much anymore.

Patricia Singleton said...

Isabella, I believe that judgments have their place and value. A wise and compassionate judge can do much good in the world and in the life of a troubled person. Thanks for sharing.