Relationships, Judgement and Freedom

The main focus of my meditation practice this week has been reflecting on how I could live in a more transcended state of love, and the inquiry of how to put that into practice more in my everyday life. The first insight that came to me after writing the intention in my journal was that renouncing all judgement of others, fully and completely, would be the greatest act in living out of a place of authentic love.

When I started paying attention to how much I responded to others from a place of judgement as I went about my day, I was pretty shocked. I became aware of how normal it seemed to function from a place of judgment, not just for me but for everyone else too. It was such a normal default behaviour, particularly in my close relationships at home, in fact, specifically there!

Although we do live a spiritually inclined life in our house, and are always moving toward our alignment and growth in our own ways and at different paces, our life has been somewhat turbulent lately. This has been mainly because of challenges related to moving, as well as other life circumstances causing some upheaval. Being challenged more and more in our day to day life, certain things, like eating a healthy diet and exercise for example, tend fall to the wayside, and less aligned and more unhealthy behaviours come to the forefront, bringing with them feelings of guilt and shame as a result. Not fun, and not the way we want to live at home, or anywhere else to be honest!

With the pressure of it all our relationships were pressed, challenged and somewhat compromised. As a result I personally became more judgemental, critical and opinionated about how those at home 'should' be acting, thinking, behaving, eating, exercising, meditating, reflecting, and all round living. I was assuming that I was the better one, and more ahead of the game because the struggle didn't appear to throw me off, no, on the contrary I felt like it enhanced my desire for greater alignment with my Soul-Self and health.

The struggle drove me, it didn't distract me, or at least that's what I thought. I felt that with my pushing, nagging, prodding and judging the others toward 'betterment', that I was working to inspire them. I was trying to encourage them into my idea of 'better' ways of doing things, all the while my desire to create 'good' was pushing them further and further away from me. This started to create an air of mistrust and resent, violating the sanctuary of safety we had established previously allowing us to each be completely who we were with the other, no matter what. Things were usually okay that way, because we were always functioning from a place of understanding in our relationship together, even during tough times.

One recent morning at home, I pulled a Soul card from one of my decks that fully resonated with what I was learning about letting go of judgement. It said 'Make the space between you and another a sanctuary so the other person can speak safely." I have kept it at my desk, and will continue to read it, and remind myself of it until I fully embody the qualities I am being nudging toward in my relationships with others.

I'm realising that even the best of intentioned 'judgement' in the form of opinions, suggestions and ideas of how, what, when and why another person ought to be doing a thing as far as you are concerned, when expressed in a judgmental way, can certainly compromise the sanctuary of trust, acceptance, understanding and compassion that you share with that person. It is toxic for relationships to be honest.

Your idea that they need to be different in any kind of way expresses an air of disapproval about them. This disturbs the flow of how they feel about who they are, and of how they listen within for the guidance from their own inner self and soul. This is especially so when they become accustomed to listening to others, and in doing so seeking approval and/or validation outside of themself because they start to trust THEM not SELF. Your judgement of them expresses to them that you do not trust, or believe that they have the necessary resources of knowledge, and/or insight within themselves to know what is best for them. This is especially so for children who are still developing into knowing who they are.

In many ways when you offer and force too many opinions about how someone else ought to be, or how they ought to do certain things upon them, and they start to listen in spite of how they feel themselves, you train them to stray further and further away from heeding to their own inner guidance and intuition. This is where feelings of resent can come into play, because their inner inclination toward freedom has been disturbed.

What I mean about freedom here is in the truest sense of the word, referring to the alignment with who you really are within, knowing it, feeling it and expressing it outwardly with conviction, unapologetically and with full trust in your values and beliefs, no matter what anyone else thinks. This is the freedom which really only can be achieved in the alignment with your own soul and inner guidance.

This week I learnt a really different viewpoint of how I could be interacting with others around me in a way that inspires them to action through trust and insight, as opposed to forcing my opinions and views of what is right or wrong upon them. It is not only empowering, but I can feel a renewed, evolved and genuine sense of freedom and honesty developing in the relationships with the people closest to me. It is liberating not only for them, but for me too because I no longer feel responsible for having to come up with all the answers of what is right and wrong ways for everybody to think act and behave around me.

I didn't realise I was a judgemental person, but now I see that I was. I think we all are though in some ways because it is how we have been taught growing up. We judge because we strive to analyse, assess and discern things as being right or wrong. We do so in an attempt to mitigate the risk of being hurt, damaged or affected by the actions, or inactions of others. It is a basic form of survival. After some real deep and honest reflection this week, I can see that this was the underlying motive of the judgment I injected into my own relationships anyway. I was afraid. The need to force my opinions on others, in an attempt to control their behaviour in a way, was a direct result of my underlying fear that their behaviour would hurt or negatively affect me.

In this great world though there is no law of assertion, only attraction and what you experience from another person is the direct reflection of your own vibrational perspective, based on what you believe. This could be consciously or unconsciously, and in any case what it means is that what you experience in your interactions with others will exactly match your expectations of them, based on what you believe and project into the relationship. This however, is another vast and interesting subject of discussion, and I will leave that as a story for another day! Here today I simply wanted to share a little insight from my own revelations this week, hoping to inspire you to try letting go of judgments and see what happens as a result.

Let others be who they are, secure in the knowledge that the more you cultivate safety in the space between you and them, the more they will be inclined to move closer to you. They will feel inspired come close into a place of trust, love compassion and consideration, as opposed to feeling stifled, longing to push way from you in a bid to regain their own sense of freedom. Let them nurture their own individuality, and honour their desire to hold onto who they are. Let them express who they are and what they want, inspired by the call of their own inner guidance, not what YOU expect from them.

I hope this honest account of my meditation practice this week inspires you to more soul aligned interactions with the ones you love around you, because both you and them alike are worthy basking in the safety and sanctuary of a soul-aligned relationship that celebrates the best of who you really are.......This is freedom at its best!

Om Namaste

Ashleigh xo

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