Tag Archives: judgement

Spot It You Got it

point Many of us have heard the phrase, “When you point your finger at someone else, remember you have three fingers pointed back at you.”  It took me a long time to truly get an understanding for this phrase.  It wasn’t until going into recovery for codependence that I finally realized what it meant.  Now, it is a sort of tool that I use to help guide myself in my own recovery.

One of my biggest problems was judging and criticizing others.  I would blame them for things that I had a hand in, and I would comment on how something they were doing was irritating me.  When I began recovery, I started looking at myself rather than others.  In doing my fourth step,  my eyes were truly opened to my behaviors and actions.  Suddenly, I realized I was all of the things I saw in others that bothered me about them.  That’s why they bothered me so much! Continue reading

4 Key Elements to Creating a Nurturing and Joyful Marriage



We all look for a secret recipe for a successful marriage, as if following those steps is going to give us the result we desire. The reality is that there is no such universal recipe for successful marriages. It depends on how you use the ingredients, the quantity and quality of them, the time and effort you invest and your personal touch. Every dish has certain key and basic ingredients and if they are missing, you cannot make it.

In the same way, every marriage should have certain key elements which are extremely vital in order for it to be successful, joyful, nurturing, caring and expansive. This is something I have personally discovered through my five and a half years of being married and creating a joyful, fun, kind and caring relationship with my husband that has contributed to my personal growth and expansion as well as his.

So what are these key elements you wonder? Here is a simplified list. Please be aware that a relationship always begins with you. So these elements can be used to create a loving relationship with you first before you create it with your partner! It is only when you have a nurturing relationship with you personally, you can bring that element to your marriage.  Continue reading

From Intent.com: Just appreciate

OhDarlingGirl Intent

I love my friends and family. I know what their favorite colors are, which ones don’t eat seafood and which ones have secret aspirations of being children’s book authors. I recognize their handwriting and their laugh. Those things have taken time to get to know. My recent intent has been about allowing new relationships the same opportunity. New friends, new coworkers, new relationships enter into my life and, considering the already tight time frame I live it, I seek to put together an entire picture about a person at lightning speed. Continue reading

What We Can Learn From Being Judged

Dave Wants YouWe’ve all experienced the deflating feeling when someone judges us. Whether to our face or through a friend, the words carry the same weight.

Someone else is saying we are less than, we aren’t good enough, we have failed, we are on the wrong path, or we are a disappointment.

Even the strongest of us have a human reaction to judgement. We all long for acceptance, connection, and unconditional love.

Perhaps the most common topics we experience feeling judged about are our views on religion or politics. The palpable sense that, If you’re not doing it my way, you’re doing it the wrong way.

I recently experienced the weight of judgement from someone very close to me. My initial reaction was to feel hurt and hopeless. I could foresee this same judgement continuing to be leveled at me for years to come. It felt like a heavy weight that would not budge.

In an effort to walk my talk, I didn’t try to run away from the feeling. I tried to observe the feelings I had and why I had them. The more I sat with this dynamic feeling, the more it began to shift. While it was true the person judging me will probably continue to do so, when I turned the mirror on myself, I started to see places I could clean up my own attitudes and judgements.

As much as we’d like to think people will change, the reality is the only person we can change is ourselves. My experience of being judged inspired me to get soft and sensitive to other people whose decisions, beliefs, or lifestyles I might not subscribe to myself. As open-minded as I like to think I am, I saw places I was being inflexible, whether through my words or my actions.

I literally felt a softening happen in my heart as I owned up to this chink in my own character.

I once went to a yoga class where, for the last five minutes before savasana the teacher instructed the class to practice whatever poses they chose. As bodies began to move freely and uniquely, the instructor commented, “Notice how it’s possible for us to all move differently in the same space.”

Her words sunk in deep as I moved honoring my own pace, needs, and breath. The entire room seemed to be a moving metaphor for our world.

We all inhabit the same space of this earth. It is entirely possible for us to honor our own truth and the truth of others. We can’t change other people, but we can choose to “be the change we wish to see” by opening our hearts a little wider and softening our insistence that our way is the only way. When we judge others we slap a label on them that blocks us from seeing their deeper beauty, our universal connection, and our common humanity.

May we all march to the beat of our own drum, but sing the same song of love.

Entrusting Yourself to the Waves

wavesI was drawn to my first Buddhist mindfulness retreat during a time when my son, Narayan, was four, and I was on the verge of divorce. During a slow, icy drive through a winter snowstorm on the way to the retreat center, I had plenty of time to reflect on what most mattered to me. I didn’t want a breakup that would bury the love I still shared with my husband; I didn’t want us to turn into uncaring, even hostile, strangers. And I didn’t want a breakup that would deprive Narayan of feeling secure and loved. My deep prayer was that through all that was happening, I’d find a way to stay connected with my heart.

Over the next five days, through hours of silent meditation, I cycled many times through periods of clarity and attentiveness, followed by stretches when I was swamped in sleepiness, plagued by physical discomfort, or lost in a wandering mind. Early one evening I became inundated by thoughts about the upcoming months: Should my husband and I hire lawyers or a mediator to handle the process of divorce? When should we move to separate residences? And, most importantly, how should I be there for our son during this painful transition?

As each anxious thought surfaced, I wanted to really dig in and work everything out in my mind. Yet something in me knew I needed to stay with the unpleasant feelings in my body. A verse from Ryokan, an eighteenth-century Zen poet, came to mind: “To find the Buddhist law, drift east and west, come and go, entrusting yourself to the waves.” The “Buddhist law” refers to the truth of how things really are. We can’t understand the nature of reality until we let go of controlling our experience. There’s no way to see clearly what’s going on if on some level we’re attempting to ignore or bypass the stormy weather.

During the last few days of the retreat I tried to let go, over and over, but felt repeatedly stymied by my well-worn strategy for feeling better—figuring things out. Now Ryokan’s verse was rife with possibility: Perhaps I could entrust myself to the waves. Perhaps the only way to real peace was by opening to life just as it was. Otherwise, behind my efforts to manage things, I’d always sense a lurking threat, something right around the corner that was going to cause trouble.

My old habits didn’t give up easily, though. As soon as I’d contact some tightness in my chest, I’d flip right back into worrying about my son’s new preschool, carpooling, or about how to find a baby-sitter with more flexible hours. Then I’d become hypercritical, harshly judging myself for “wasting” my retreat time. Gradually, I recognized that my heart was clenched tight, afraid to let the intensity of life wash through me. I needed help “entrusting.”

Each afternoon, the teachers had been leading us in a lovingkindness meditation. I decided to try weaving this into my sitting. The classical form of the meditation consists of sending loving prayers to ourselves and widening circles of other beings. I began to offer kind wishes to myself: “May I be happy and at ease; may I be happy and at ease.” At first, repeating the words felt like a superficial mental exercise, but soon something shifted. My heart meant it: I cared about my own life, and becoming conscious of that caring softened some of the tightness around my heart.

Now I could more easily give myself to the waves of fear and sorrow, and simply notice the drifting thoughts and physical sensations—squeezing and soreness—that were coming and going. Whenever the worries that had been snagging me appeared, I sensed that they too were waves, tenacious ones that pressed uncomfortably on my chest. By not resisting, by letting the waves wash through me, I began to relax. Rather than fighting the stormy surges, I rested in an ocean of awareness that embraced all the moving waves. I’d arrived in a sanctuary that felt large enough to hold whatever was going on in my life.

After my retreat, I returned home with the intention of taking refuge in presence whenever I was irritated, anxious, and tight. I was alert when the first flare-up occurred, a week later. My ex-husband called to say he couldn’t take care of Narayan that evening, leaving me scrambling to find a baby-sitter. “I’m the breadwinner, and I can’t even count on him for this!” my mind sputtered. “Once again he’s not doing his share, once again he’s letting me down!”

But when I was done for the day, I took some time to pause and touch into the judgment and blame lingering in my body, and my righteous stance softened. I sat still as the blaming thoughts and swells of irritation came and went. Underneath the resentment was an anxious question: “How will I manage?” As I let the subterranean waves of anxiety move through me, I found a quiet inner space that had more breathing room—and more perspective. Of course I couldn’t figure out how the future would play out. The only time I had was right now, and this moment was okay. From this space I could sense my ex-husband’s stress about finding a new place to live, working out our schedules, and more deeply, adapting to a different future than he had imagined. This helped me feel more tolerant and kind. It also revealed the power of entrusting myself to the waves. My husband and I continue to be dear friends. With him and in countless instances with others, this gateway to presence has reawakened me to a space of loving that feels like home.

Adapted from my book Radical Acceptance
My new book True Refuge  is out January 2013

Enjoy this podcast titled: Attend and Befriend

For more information visit www.tarabrach.com

When You Bring An End To Judgement




Sunday, 5/8


Bringing an End to Judgment


“When you bring an end to judgment, you bring an end to an entire way of living. This is no small thing. This is a life-changing shift in attitude and behavior. This is a miracle.


But how does one perform this miracle? That is the question to which everyone wants an answer. Please, then, pay very close attention to what I am going to tell you now: The way to move out of judgment is to move into gratitude.”


Happier Than God

Neale Donald Walsch

Steve Farrell

Humanity’s Team World Wide Coordinating Director


Forgiveness – Seeing the World Differently

If you want to see the brave, look for those who can forgive.  — Bhagavad Gita

The conventional understanding of forgiveness is of some absolution or pardon: “I know you did wrong, but I’ll overlook it this time.” But the original meaning of forgiveness is very different. The ancient Greek word for forgiveness is aphesis, meaning “to let go.” When we forgive others we let go of the judgments we may have projected onto them. We release them from all our interpretations and evaluations, all our thoughts of right or wrong, friend or foe.

Instead we see that they are human beings caught up in their own illusions about themselves and the world around them. Like us, they feel the need for security, control, recognition, approval, or stimulus. They too probably feel threatened by people and things that prevent them from finding fulfillment. And, like us, they sometimes make mistakes. Yet, behind all these errors, there is another conscious being simply looking for peace of mind.

Even those we regard as evil are seeking the same goal. It is just that for one reason or another—who knows what pain they may have endured in their childhood, or what beliefs they may have adopted—they seek their fulfillment in ways that are uncaring, and perhaps even cruel. Deep inside, however, they are all sparks of the divine light struggling to find some salvation in this world.

When we let go of our judgments of others, we let go of the source of much of our anger and many of our grievances. Our bad feelings may seem justified at the time, but they don’t serve us—in fact, they usually cause more damage to ourselves than they do to the other person. The freer we are of our judgments and grievances, the more at peace we can be in ourselves.




The Sure Way to Raise Your Life Level

Almost every kind of unhappy feeling is the result of mistaking the partial for the whole. What this means is that when we don’t see the whole picture, we are likely to act in a way that is self-defeating.

One example of this would be that terrible sinking feeling that comes with learning too late, after you’ve become upset, that things weren’t the way you were so sure they had been. That, in fact, it was you who had misjudged or misunderstood the person or event; and now that you can see the whole situation, there is no reason at all to be angry or sad, anxious or afraid.

How many times have we regretted some thoughtless action on our part once we found out all of the facts? This is what we must do: gather all of the facts. I promise you that everything can be explained. Nothing that happens to you or through you need ever go without you understanding why. You can be self-enlightened instead of self-frightened. You have a choice. This discovery that you can always choose in favor of yourself is real excitement.

You do not have to accept your present life-level. Life-level is what determines whether you sail through this life or sink in it. At present, it may seem to you as if there are times when you don’t have much choice in your own life, I want you to know that this is a lie. This temporary feeling of being trapped is part of your current life-level, where you sincerely feel as though your choices are limited. Again, I want you to know this is simply not true. There is always a choice.

The problem is that most of us insist on our choices, so it’s vital we see the following: our present experience of life has been determined by the choices that we have already made. Why go back to the same field of choices? We already suspect that it will yield no real harvest of happiness, and now we must confirm this suspicion. Nothing bad will happen! In fact, only something good can occur once we stop clinging to useless ideas.

You could say that your new choice is to stop choosing for yourself from yourself. This is the first necessary step for changing your life-level. Here is something to help you see the wisdom of your new and higher choice.

If your choices so far have left you feeling dissatisfied and incomplete, you must stop blaming your selections and see that the problem lies with the chooser — you! You and what happens to you every day are the reflections of your life-level.

We are wrongly led to believe that life makes us into the kind of person we are. The truth is that the kind of person we are, our life-level, makes life what it is for us! This is why nothing can really change for us until we see that our unhappiness isn’t connected with the event, it is the level of it. Let’s look at this a little more deeply.

We believe that we meet events and that those events are good or bad, pleasurable or punishing. In other words, our feelings are the reflections of what happens to us moment to moment. That’s why, while acting from our current life-level, our first choice whenever we feel distressed is always to try and change the condition we blame for making us feel that way — the belief being that by changing our unhappy surroundings we will bring an end to our unhappiness. This has never really worked, and it never really will, because the unpleasant or unhappy condition was not the event but your reaction to it.

What does this new knowledge mean to you? Everything! It means:

 — You can let go of those resentful feelings toward your job, because the treadmill isn’t what you are doing but the way you are thinking.

 — You can let go of trying to change other people, because you are what is bothering you about them.

 — You can let go of the fear of unforeseen changes or challenges because the only thing you really ever have to face is yourself.

Best of all, you can let go of the impossible and unbelievably self-punishing task of thinking that you are responsible for the way the world turns. The only world you are responsible for is your inner-world; the world of your thoughts and feelings, impulses and desires. Your life-level is determined by how clearly you can see into this inner-world. This new kind of seeing is safety and ultimately the root of all self-success, because when you know where not to step, your walk through life is a safe and happy one.

You wouldn’t go over to your neighbor’s kitchen to fix your broken sink. Why try and change your outer world when it is only a reflection of your inner life? Do not try to change the external world. Change your own attitudes and viewpoints. When you change yourself, you change the world as far as you are concerned, for you are your own world. Here is a simple way to say all of this: The inner determines the outer.

This is not as difficult to understand as it may appear at first. Let’s take an example. If a person writing a letter misspells a word, the error starts in his mind, after which it appears on paper. He cannot possibly correct the paper until his mind is corrected first. If he does not clarify his mind, the error must repeat itself on paper endlessly.

No doubt you see the parallel here with human problems. People try to correct exterior mistakes instead of correcting the way they think, which leaves them lost, because unknowingly they are still chained to a mistake-making machine. That is why it is so important to understand this lesson. Your discontentment with life is with your understanding — your life-level — not with what your understanding has brought to you.

Trying to change your life without first changing your life-level is like trying to convince yourself that a merry-go-round has a destination. If you are tired of going around and around, remember that you can get off whenever you choose.

Truthful principles such as these are here to assist you in making this Higher choice by helping you to increase your self-understanding. This elevated understanding in turn raises your life-level. As you raise your life-level, you will see that you have effortlessly raised the way in which you react to every event. Then the whole world begins to slow down for you because you now understand that it wasn’t this life that was making you dizzy — it was your thinking.

(Excerpted from "The Secret of Letting Go" Rev. Edition, Llewellyn, 2007)

Guy Finley is the acclaimed author of more than 30 books and audio programs on the subject of self-realization, several of which have become international best sellers. His popular works, published in 16 languages, are widely endorsed by doctors, professionals, and religious leaders of all denominations. Among many others, his popular titles include: The Secret of Letting Go, Design Your Destiny, The Lost Secrets of Prayer, Apprentice of the Heart, Let Go and Live in the Now, and The Essential Laws of Fearless Living. Finley is the founder and director of Life of Learning Foundation, a nonprofit center for self-study located in Southern Oregon where he gives talks four times each week. Visit www.GuyFinley.org for a wealth of free helpful information, free audio and video downloads, and to request your free Self-Improvement Starter Kit. 

Discover the Secrets of Being Unstoppable


Be Inspired by the Simple Moments

Yesterday, I walked to the end of my driveway to get into my car and stopped to watch as this little boy slowly rode past me on his bicycle.

His head bobbled a bit because of his helmet but it was his blissful smile that immediately caught my eye. I don’t think he even noticed me standing there watching him. He was eating a Popsicle and leaning back in his seat riding “no hands”. He easily balanced himself in his seat while he ate and smiled meandering down the street.

I stood there smiling and wondered what he was thinking. Isn’t that such an adult thing to ponder, “I wonder what he was thinking…?” He was very likely just enjoying his ride and his Popsicle. As adults, we are always judging, confirming, questioning.
I remember times when I would ride my bike home with my friend after our softball games, talking non-stop while chewing huge wads of bubble gum. Or the times I would walk with my sister to the corner store to get penny candy stuffing our faces as we walked home with our little hands dipping rapidly into the little brown bags filled with gummy worms, marshmallow strawberries or fun dipsticks.

Can you remember yourself as a little kid? Can you feel the feeling of simplicity, freedom and peace? We can retrieve these memories whenever we want and be soothed knowing that life can be this simple. Enjoy!
Embrace your life!

Kelly McIntyre M.Sc.


You Are the Blessings in the Challenge

Think of a challenge in your life and ask yourself, “What is the blessing?” Take a moment to consider that this difficulty may be a blessing in disguise.  Be open to seeing the answer in a way that includes you as the blessings.  You are integral to the blessings. There’s nothing separating you from the blessings.

John Morton, D.S.S.

As you look for the blessings, be willing to sacrifice old ways of thinking such as, “I’m wrong. I’m not good enough. I can’t do it.  It’s not worth it.”  Give up any negative point of view that says, “No, there aren’t any blessings here.”  Let go of those doubts.  Consider it a small price to pay in order for you to experience the blessings.

As you let go of your denial and look for the good, you’re allowing yourself to be shown the blessings. All that you need to do is to bring your awareness to the truth of your being — you are the blessings.

Sometimes I have tried to convince myself that looking for the good will not work.  I have thought that a situation or a person was bad, wrong or evil.  Regardless of how bad or wrong I have perceived something, I still have an opportunity to look for the good in the midst of my “bad” experience.

At times, I say to myself, “See the good.  See the Divine.  At the same time, I also find myself saying, “No, I do not want to look for the good.”  I realize I am wrestling within myself between the good that already is and my not wanting to look for it.

When I do look for the good, the blessings appear to me. Then I realize how silly I have been to even attempt to focus on the bad or negative.  I may feel embarrassed and even amused.  I then have to admit how bad, wrong, or foolish I was to judge the situation or the person.  I may also have my self-judgments to deal with.  But at least I’ve gotten my focus back with me to my learning and growth and the good that is present. It is much easier to deal with challenges this way.  Rather than judging, I choose to accept the situation as well as myself in my learning.

Attempting to place the problem outside of me and blaming others is futile. When I bring the responsibility back with me and how I am choosing to look at things, situations become easier to manage.  I feel more confident and secure as I approach my challenges because I am coming from a place of trust in my source that all that is coming forward is for my greater good.

Looking for the good does not necessarily feel good every time.  So when I feel uncomfortable, upset or disturbed, I ask myself, “What or who am I judging in this situation?  Am I judging myself?  Have I forgotten the good that is present?”

Do the best you can with your life situation, including those times when you don’t consciously understand or have a clear sense of the blessings. We are learning to trust ourselves and our source.  So remember to relax and be patient. There is value in learning to wait. Waiting can help you prepare for when the opportunity actually becomes available for your choosing.

As you endure, steer clear of judging your process.  Judgments can distract us and cause us to  waste opportunities. Trust your process and the challenges you face.  Know that your eternally loving source is bringing to you experiences and blessings that are important in the timing that is best for you.  You can always choose to be looking for the good and the greater good to become.

Trust that your life always has opportunities to better know and understand what God is doing with you and all of us here in this world. You can trust that God understands that you want more enjoyment, that you want to contribute and participate in making your life work in ways that are happy and fulfilling.  You are an infinite source of blessings.  You are in the process of realizing the blessings are already in motion and becoming the reality of your life more fully as you choose the greater good.


John Morton, D.S.S., is the author of The Blessings Already Are and You Are the Blessings. Learn more about John’s works at www.johnmortonministries.org.  Contact John at goto@johnmortonministries.org.


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