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PRAYER OF THE MOMENT

Dear Lord,


Amen


Judging People - Arrogance or Ignorance?


Is judging others a proof that we are missing something somewhere along the line?

So often we make judgements on people, stating that 'X is better than Y', 'Y is smarter than Z' and 'Z is nicer than T'. We assume that we know enough to decide who is good and who is bad. We take it for granted that we have the right to compare and give the final verdict. We are convinced in our own little minds of our own little truths and never hesitate to let others know of what we believe. There is a sort of arrogance in our habit of judging people that can become quite annoying. But is it only arrogance or does ignorance play a role as well?

What we don't know and we don't even bother to find out is that Y, who is so bad according to our judgements, has much more to struggle against than X, whom we appreciate as good. We often ignore the three main factors contributing to human personality: heredity, environment and education. Perhaps 'being good' is a natural gift for X, while Y has to make double efforts to achieve the same goal. Maybe if Y had been born with X's advantages, he would have done much better. But who really knows?

The point I’m trying to make is that it's very dangerous to make judgements. The quality of our lives would increase so much if we stopped this silly judging game and we became aware of our own ignorance. Experience has taught me that sooner or later I'll do the same things I judged and hated in others. Every time I thought I was better than somebody, I ended up in circumstances that made me act the same, or even worse, than that person.

Life can be very treacherous, and so can be the human mind. Some borders are almost invisible and we can cross a bridge in as little as an instant without even realizing we’ve done it. We can become the opposite of what we are in a mere second, we can go from being normal to being insane and from deep meaning to complete and utter absurdity. We can lose everything or gain everything in the time it takes a butterfly to flap its wings.

Life is a gift, indeed, but so often it is like giving a car to a child or to somebody who hasn’t got a driving license. So many times we live it without being aware of its most basic rules. Or we think we know the rules but when it comes to facing a real challenge, we realize in fact we know nothing. The other driver we judge - our fellow being, our neighbour - could be simply caught in a bigger traffic jam or drive a car that is less powerful than ours.

Before giving in to the natural temptation of judging people, we should make an effort to learn the truth about ourselves, to find our own limitations and deal with them. Only when we realize how hard it is to be how this world expects us to be and how pointless it is to try and please everybody, we can appreciate what others are doing and the effort they are putting into things.

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