Really? My eyes widen and I freeze frame, attempting to wrap my head around the context and stern request, to no one in particular, that some woman has just made at a gathering, index finger wagging; or delivered as a warning or hashtag on Facebook or some other social media outlet.
"Don't judge me" has slithered into our vernacular, a verbal ditty casually delivered in seemingly everyday conversation as women explain their faults: what they ate for dinner, what they fed their kids for breakfast, their home's poor state of cleanliness, what they've chosen to wear for comfort.
Stop it! Please. Everyone.
Maybe I'm over-reacting. ("Don't judge me.") Maybe this is just an innocent, cute little hash-taggable saying. Maybe it's more--? Maybe social media, where our current culture (guilty..."Don't judge m..") bears all, solicits the microscope of public criticism.
What is criticism?: A nasty, infusion of negativity that affects ourselves and others when we put people down while, usually unconsciously, attempting to build up our weak self-worth. (Been there. Done that. "Don't judge ...")
So, there's that. Maybe it's just me. ("Don't judg. ...")
Or: Could we choose not to give a damn if others judge us or not?. For the last three years, I've been working on getting to what my spiritual teacher calls "The I Don't Give A Sh*t Level." That I am so based and centered in my own self-esteem--who I truly am versus self-worth built upon what others feel, think, approve of me—that it. Truly. Does. Not. Matter.
It's as if Social Media has created a giant grocery shopping cart of judgement opportunities. The ginormous one perched in front of you at the check out line. The one behind you, the one to the side. The other side. Over there. Those. Them. Spilling out the contents of all the things we choose to judge about others, the junk food (there I go, inferring judgment...but you get my point.)
Here's an incredibly powerful quote by author Joseph Chilton Pierce from Biology of Transcendence, that gives a potent perspective on just how harmful judgment can be:
"Being judged by someone offends us if the judgement is true and more so if it is false. When we accuse or judge another, it has the same effect on us as being judged ourselves. Any judgment we make, no matter of whom, registers in the heart as a disruption of relationship, and the heart dutifully responds on behalf of our defense, shifting in neural, hormonal, and electromagnetic systems from relational to defensive.[...]Reaping with arrogance and sowing with tears."
I'm learning here, folks. With elbow grease, I'm still stripping away nearly 54 years of DNA-infused knee-jerking tendencies to judge all kinds of things about others. But here's the thing: What if I/we consider there are no others? Or, rather, that those others are all us? I mean, that's what Pierce is saying, I think. When we judge others...We judge ourselves.
What do you think?