Non-Judgment Towards Circumstances

What is the difference between making judgments about things, and being judgmental towards things? Even in being completely non-judgmental, we still make a kind of judgement that it is better not to make judgments than it is to make judgments. If I am unhappy with my life and the circumstances I find myself living within, I need to judge those circumstances as undesirable if I am to then make a choice to change those circumstances. Yet, there is another sense where circumstances and myself and intertwined in a dance. There is not the outside world which happens to me, nor the outside world which I act upon, both the inside (me) and the outside world, and interconnected. Recognizing this relationship, may be helpful in showing us that which is in our control to change, so that we will not have our emotions and mentality be under the authority of positive or negative circumstances.

Now, here is a story which highlights letting go of the need to judge events and circumstances as good or bad (I first heard this story from a lecture by Alan Watts:

There once was a man who lived near a village. This man owned 7 horses. One day, his seven horses ran away.

The towns-people came to the man and said, “oh, how unfortunate for you.”

The man replied, “Maybe.”

The next day, his seven horses had returned, but now they were eight. The towns-people came to the man and said “wow! what luck!”

The man replied, “Maybe.”

The next day the man’s son was riding one of the horses, when he was thrown off and broke his leg. The towns-people came to the man and said, “What a tragedy.”

The man replied, “Maybe.”

The next day a draft was issued and all able bodied sons were forced to go to war. The towns-people came to the man and said, “how fortunate you are that your son’s leg is broken and he is home and safe.”

The man replied, “Maybe.”

Moral of the story: Live as though nothing circumstantial is viewed as an advantage or disadvantage in life. Live in the present.

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What do you think about this?

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