Weighed, measured and judged...

in philosophy •  2 months ago

Judgement means the ability to make considered decisions or come to sensible conclusions; It's a simple word but one that can bring many people unhappiness. Applying the word in life is part of being human; We make judgements all the time and the decisions that result from these judgements impact our life in many different ways. Consider the driver who judges himself fit to drive home after 5 drinks at the bar and then ploughs into an innocent passerby killing them. Or, conversely the judgment that leads to a decision to walk home or catch a cab...The decision made will certainly change lives one way or another in this case right?

Judgement also changes lives in other ways of course, positive and negative, however there's one particular incarnation of it that I find particularly abhorrent: Pre-judgement. That is, to pass judgment prematurely or without sufficient reflection or investigation. You know what I mean right? Judging a person on how they look for instance, or on information heard second or third-hand, or on the actions of other similar people. I wonder how many people in the world have pre-judged a situation or person only to regret it at a later time or to their personal detriment. I would guess the number is uncountable.

So, as a human, making judgements is impossible to avoid; Even children make them from a very young age. We need to make judgements to get through life. I think it's ingrained in our makeup however pre-judgment on the other hand is a learned process. Where we learn it from I do not know: Parents and grand-parents certainly, people we meet at social-environments as kids like schools and clubs, work, newspapers, books, television, the radio and of course social media. All of the above I think. Pre-judgement not only leads to incorrect decision-making, loss of opportunity and options but also pain and suffering, disappointment, depression and of course, the danger of being judged for pre-judging itself and found wanting as a person, peer, colleague, partner, friend etc. It's a slippery slope. Pre-judgement I mean.

I've recently been judged...I say judged not pre-judged because there was some consideration based on supplied information and a subsequent sensible decision ensued...I'm in for some more judgement also as there's another industry award I have been put forward for also and so the judgement begins again. I'm not really comfortable with it but I have little choice.

I've also been pre-judged...A lot.

From a young age I was pre-judged. Growing up in a small town in the 1970's, and being a little different, meant that the kids at school were quite cruel. I won't say the words, but by the time I was seven I had been called just about every derogatory racial-slur known to mankind. I had also been ostracised based simply on how I looked. None of the kids bothered to get to know me, I was simply the "xxxxxx" to them and not worthy of any courtesy, respect or friendship. I'm not special in that way though. I was talking to a friend of mine a few days ago, a very beautiful woman as an adult, but as a kid...Well, she was mercilessly picked on and pre-judged because she had an eye-condition and wore glasses. I'm sure she felt the same as I did of course, ostracised.

Pre-judgment is really just an eleven-letter word for prejudice. It sounds a little more sinister doesn't it? Prejudice.

As I grew older the prejudice changed, became more sophisticated, and of course often more hurtful however getting called some of the names I was called at six years old was very hurtful indeed, so maybe it was just a different sort of hurt I was feeling.

These day's, as an adult member of the human race (I still maintain that I am from another planet though) I am still being pre-judged and am subjected to prejudice. The difference is I am more aware of what people who are prejudiced against me are really all about and more aware of who I actually am as a person. I no longer go home crying each day like I did as a six year old and nor do I teach people lessons with my fists as I did as a teenager. I have character though. All of those times I suffered through verbal taunts and prejudice as a kid, and even into my 20's and 30's built that character.

I am pre-judged for being too rich, for being too successful, for not being successful enough, for not driving the right car, or living in the right suburb, for not being wealthy, not eating at the right restaurants or wearing the right watch or suit. I was recently pre-judged for a track I had playing in my car when someone got in...Seriously. Occasionally I get racially vilified but not often. I got told to "go back to my own country" earlier this year. I wasn't pleased considering I'm as Australian as Vegemite. I think most people reading this may relate. People's misconceptions are almost laughable, or would be if they weren't relied upon to actually judge others and make decisions upon. It's a pretty sad world we live in; A world full of sheeple. Ignorance. Hubris. Narcissism. Hate. Greed. Jealousy. Entitlement.

I'm not sure where it's all headed to be honest; It's certainly creating a rise in depression and youth-suicide despite all the initiatives to counter it. It's changing people also I think, both the people being prejudiced against and those perpetrating the prejudice. It's odd that prejudice is a learned-process because just as prejudice can be learned so can understanding and patience. It's not too late to discover the true meaning of the word judgement and deploy it with more conviction and regularity.

We, as humans, have the ability to learn, and unlearn habits. We also have the benefit of recorded and remembered history to draw upon. I can draw upon the verbal (and sometimes physical) abuse I endured as a kid and learn from it. I could have perpetuated the behaviour but built a character instead allowing me to be the successful (sort of confident), slightly shy and people-phobic man I am today. We have the ability to look at the mistakes of the past, choose not to repeat them and to stand above, apart, as individuals and as a race; The human race, purportedly the most intelligent animal on the planet.

Judgement is a necessary part of life however it should be applied carefully and only after the facts have been considered, weighed and measured. Do I judge people? Yes, of course, like all of us. Do I pre-judge people, situations and concepts? I'd like to say no not at all, however I have done so, in the past and I may in the future. I work to avoid it though. I work hard at that. I recall my own upsetting experiences, I recall lessons learned from history and from all around me in the present. Prejudice is not constructive. Prejudice is not intelligent. Prejudice is not acceptable.

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The difference is I am more aware of what people who are prejudiced against me are really all about and more aware of who I actually am as a person.

Oh darn. I could have quoted almost your entire text and say: this is me. (Or a paragraph or two.)

I remember thinking when I was young that the things "they" are saying about me does not state facts about me, but facts about themselves. Unfortunately that did not comfort me as much as it does today and I became a very angry teenager. I sometimes hated everyone as I thought everyone around me were bad, evil and envious people. Cowards.

But the truth really is this:
If someone says: "Do you see those clothes that poor thing is wearing, horrible! Fat, ugly and poor." It is not a fact about the clothes or how that person looks like, it's a fact about the one who says bad things about someone else. Ugly person inside.

Judging a person on how they look for instance, or on information heard second or third-hand, or on the actions of other similar people.

I've always hated the sentence that starts a bit like this: "I have a friend that..." and the words following aren't good things but only bad. Mostly gossip that has only the view of one person: the one who is spreading the gossip or bad mouthing the person in question. My thoughts when hearing that kind of talk is: "I hope you don't think that I'm your friend because if this is what you do to your friends, I don't want to be your friend."

Pre-judgement really is one of the things we learn from home. First steps from our parents, next ones from our friends or from our haters, school, teachers, society. They all say with their actions: "This is how it's done."

And as you said, everyone does pre-judgement, some more than others, we all should think before we act upon our thoughts. Is this feeling that I get from that person relevant? Is it a fact or just my impression? My reaction of how that person looks, talks or acts. Is it relevant or could that person be good friend or go-worker, despite the fact what my first reaction is.

We, as humans, have the ability to learn, and unlearn habits.

Well said.

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I've always hated the sentence that starts a bit like this: "I have a friend that..." and the words following aren't good things but only bad. Mostly gossip that has only the view of one person: the one who is spreading the gossip or bad mouthing the person in question.

Yeah , like that person at your new job who says..."Look out for so and so...He's ..."

All that tells me is to look out for the person who said it!

Thanks for your comments and I'm glad you can relate. I don't like to harp on the crap I dealt with as a kid really, but it was relevant to the post I guess. I'm no angel, nor am I perfect...I'm human like everyone else but I think a little before judging and that's all I ask anyone to do.

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No-one's perfect. But there are two things that matter big time. How we can determine who are we as individuals and how are we doing as humans.

How much we do the things we do, much more good than bad? And do we learn from our mistakes? :)

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Yes. I call it being the best version of ourselves, as often as possible.

Good job.Want to see more posts on future.Good luck @rdnblogs

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You didn't read my blog as your comment came only 30 seconds after I posted it. Your next comment will get you flagged unless it makes relevant and valid references to the content.

To listen to the audio version of this article click on the play image.

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If i was being all hippy about it, I would ask the question:

Are you happy with the person you are, right now?

(presuming you answer yes..)

So you can very grateful for all those wankers coming into your life and shaping the person that you are, right now..

Being 'happy with the person you are right now' is a place far ahead of most people today...

(If you answered 'no'...bugger.)

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I am very happy with who I am right now actually. Monumentally happy for many reasons. My life is good and I fit it well as a participant within it. As I said in my blog, all those cock-knockers helped me build the character I possess now and I'm a good person; Not perfect, but good. I didn't enjoy the prejudice then and wouldn't now although back then I was a young frightened kid and now I'm not so things would be different; Things are different when it happens.

I still experience prejudice now but I'm a different version of me than the six year old, the 15 year old, 30 year old etc. I'm more equipped to deal with it, probably due to the fact it happened in the first place...

It's odd, back when I was on Facebook I'd get the odd friend request from someone from school; I'd ignore it of course but couldn't help but wonder why they'd send it. Does time heal these things, or just make a person forget. I'm 48...I haven't forgotten and yet I'm ok that it happened.

People judge whatever is different from what they know or what they are used to. And they know nothing. Therefore they judge everything. Until they come to the realization that everything is One, they won't stop judging.

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Agreed.

Everyone has their own point of view they give their opinions according them everybody has a. Different thinking so nobody is wrong when they are judged they did the right thing but we don't know what the felt and how they suffered so it's better to keep our judgement to ourselve till we know the complete truth

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