Judith Bobbe, LCSW
“Cultivating attitudes of friendliness, compassion, happiness and non-judgment…protect our mind from the subtle contaminations of animosity, jealousy and self-righteousness.” Pandit Rajmani Tigunait, The Secret of the Yoga Sutras
Thoughts flow within our minds, sometimes circling endlessly. Tadpoles swim out of their eggs and flowers open to the sun. Dynamic forces of nature are in us and around us, the entire web of life has no boundaries.
We are made of the same spiritual and material elements as everything else in the universe. When we feel love, we are at home and at one with the world. Pure existence is undeniably beautiful.
Animals and plants grow, live and die according to the invisible laws of nature which determine their patterns, structure and inherent qualities. They are not inhibited by themselves. The life force simply emerges, naturally.
Humans are different in that we live inside minds which are trained to be very judgmental. Judgments create walls. Every thought we have which is judgmental towards ourselves prohibits growth, and the emergence of our talents, spontaneity and creativity. While children are naturally extremely creative, many adults have trouble developing their creativity and believe they are not creative at all. Training changes the human mind.
We judge ourselves in order to protect ourselves from being seen as not good enough. Are we good enough, normal enough? Are we too abnormal, too different? Will we be valued and appreciated by the world or will we judged and excluded?
Will be be approved of, or will will be rejected?
are we safe? …are we safe to be ourselves?
We try to protect ourselves from the worlds judgments by judging ourselves, and by trying to be perfect. Fear keeps us aligned with our judgments.
We try to live up to standards of perfection which are impossible, in order to avoid feeling stigmatized. It is an unsustainable way to live because constricting habits are created.
Self judgment is a prison. It can take the form of depression, anxiety, or in addictions.
For people trying to change, it becomes apparent that the inside has to change, the mind has to change.
We have to change the way we relate to ourselves. In order to do this we need new habits which support self-awareness, self-acceptance, openness and courage.
Meditation practices which cultivate compassion are a great antidote to patterns of self-judgment. Through repetitious practice of expanding compassion as an attitude and as a feeling, we experience the hugeness of the inner self which is comprised of love. We begin to disengage from habits that are constricting because a natural reassurance and feelings of safety, develop from within.
Judgement as a way of being in oneself and in the world becomes less ingrained and less attractive. Love, inner peace and patience can unfold naturally.
It is actually very practical. We change the mind by practicing the opposite of habits of the mind.
Self love is based in pure being, and in establishing connections with the inner self which is itself luminous and timeless. Like the flower blooms without getting in its own way, we too can live with greater freedom to evolve.
When the walls of judgment begin to dissolve, the life force becomes strong, and the will to become, regardless of fitting into standards, becomes more of a motivator. Strength emerges which is flexible and open to the needs of life beyond ideas of perfection. The ability to feel safe to be oneself and to be grateful for life, in the purest sense, flourishes when judgmental patterns fall away.
for more information please see my website:http://www.personal-discovery-chicago.com/meditation-and-mindfulness-practices/