Judgment and Discernment

Last night I had an interesting experience, a culmination of feelings that have been rambling around in me for a while now. I was talking with a couple of my friends while we were enjoying a champagne from 2011. This tends to be a difficult vintage in Champagne, but the winemaker chose to bottle a specific single vineyard wine in essence highlight the land and the year. The wine was tasty, but not profound. It was great for that moment though, not too demanding and rather delicious. A great vehicle for enjoying life and the company of my friends.

Judgment is something that is very much a part of our lives. We are given a set of criteria and we measure and analysis whether something or someone(including ourselves) fits into a neat box. This can be quite useful, and it can be fantastically limiting. Judgment is all too often used as a shield to avoid having to examine something deeper with in ourselves, or feel something deeper within ourselves. We judge – things, places, people, ourselves to make it seem as though we’re connecting. Instead we’re just avoiding.


The time with my friends above hit a moment where judgment of the wine came about because it wasn’t living up to its best potential for the winemaker, vineyard, etc. I realized I was annoyed and bored with this turn in the conversation. I didn’t want to judge that wine for what it “should be”. I wanted to appreciate the wine for what it was. Listening to the conventional thoughts on what a wine should be was tedious and boring. I felt uncomfortable and either wanted to leave or get mad. I rode out these sensations, and then spoke my truth. It wasn’t fully heard because my friend was in his head, analyzing and judging. He wasn’t feeling. He wanted to focus on what could be rather than what was.

I have been guilty of this so many times in my life. I understand it, but it was time to move past judgment. I was feeling not thinking, and it was brilliant. Yet, it separated me from my friends to a degree. I didn’t want to bond over what could have been, I wanted to bond over what was. Obviously we moved along and it was fine, but this feeling stuck with me. Bonding over a future that isn’t going to happen is a more high minded form of negative bonding. Its still avoiding what is real and being present. Actually feeling.


I’m not casting judgment out entirely, it has its uses, but we rely on it far too often as a means of control. It is simply another illusion for us to hide from our truest and highest selves. Stop trying to control and simply be. Feel the feelings, and do this enough and you will enjoy the feelings rather than hiding from them.

A counter point tool for judgment is discernment. Discernment allows us to be present in the moment and lead from our feelings. Does this feel good, right, beneficial? It doesn’t rely on external rules and rigidity, if follows intuition and openness. Enjoy discernment as it connects you to your highest self allowing you to know what is best for you, in the moment. Judgment forces you to rely on others boundaries and rules, putting you in your head rather than your body.

Enjoy discerning, connecting to yourself, experiencing your actual feelings. Skip judgment, its someone else’s game that’s not truly fun to play.