Author Topic: How do I handle being judgmental when not being so affects me negatively?  (Read 2831 times)

ButtonLife

I know that I should not be judgmental of how another person acts or for how they are, but is it appropriate in certain circumstances? I've noticed that one of my close friends has violent, angry, and down right hateful tendencies. I'm not sure if this is something I'm just noticing as I'm developing more mentally or if this is just new behavior he's portraying, but it makes me extremely uncomfortable and brings me down.

It's gotten to the point that I don't want to be around him because of the things he says or does. I feel bad for judging him, but at the same time I know how much being around a person can influence how you are yourself. That's just not something that I want to rub off on me and I don't want him to think I'm ok with it either.

It upsets me to see him like this, but when he has problems or issues dealing with himself he either denies it or justifies it in some way so talking to him about it is useless. Am I in the wrong for feeling this way? It's hard for me to draw the line between what is acceptable observation and reasoning or completely uncalled judging.

Irfan

I know that I should not be judgmental of how another person acts or for how they are, but is it appropriate in certain circumstances?

Hmm ... How do you know that you shouldn't be judgemental? In daily life, being able to decide who you should let into your life is important! When you meditate, the goal is to observe without judgement, but I don't think that means that you have to suspend judgement in all areas of life! That would be very difficult to sustain! I'd suggest continuing to meditate, and then using all the tools available to you to deal with the situation you're facing. Hopefully, your intuitions and ability to judge will be enhanced by what you learn through your practice.

Vivek

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    • Advaita & U Ba Khin's tradition
Quote
I've noticed that one of my close friends has violent, angry, and down right hateful tendencies. I'm not sure if this is something I'm just noticing as I'm developing more mentally or if this is just new behavior he's portraying, but it makes me extremely uncomfortable and brings me down.
BL, I am not sure if you are doing some kind of mindfulness practice, but assuming that you do, one good yardstick to identify whether you are being judgmental or just observing your friend's behavior objectively, is to notice if there is any emotion or mental reaction arising while such "judgmental" thoughts occur in your mind. If there is indeed some reaction, it is not useful being too concerned about it. The best thing to do is to observe the reaction (and the associated body sensation, if you are familiar with that aspect). Just welcome everything that arises mentally and physically, without needing to do anything about it. Eventually, the mind is stripped off all reactions and agitations and you will be able to observe things truly objectively. The reason your mental reaction presently "brings you down" could be because you are yet to develop the mindfulness to really observe it WHILE IT OCCURS. Don't worry, such skills take time to develop.   
Let's go beyond this illusion, shall we?

ButtonLife

I am not sure if you are doing some kind of mindfulness practice
I am not, I am only practicing Samatha. So it is definitely a hard thing to observe the feelings brought on by this situation. I would go so far as to say it's beyond me at this point.

Vivek

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    • Advaita & U Ba Khin's tradition
I am not sure how Samatha is NOT a mindfulness-based practice. Anyway, if the meditation is continued, there is a good chance to be eventually be able to see everything objectively.
Let's go beyond this illusion, shall we?

CameronJ

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    • Sitting meditation, Hatha Yoga, also involved with Shambhala Meditation Community
Yeah, as the other poster stated, it could be a good opportunity to practice not reacting compulsively around that kind of negative energy...to observe it with equanimity. On the other hand, it sounds like an occasion to hold him accountable...to say, in whatever words that work for your friendship, "you know I don't like that, so if you can't cut it out a little while I'm here, I can't stick around very long." Personally, as a matter of principal, I limit my exposure to people who don't value self awareness and character refinement. If it's someone you've been close to, though, the situation might indeed require all the tools you have available to you to figure out something that's workable.

 

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