Swami Kripalu was quoted as saying “the highest form of spiritual practice is self-observation without judgment”. I love this quote.
I believe this to be a very powerful statement. Imagine going through your entire day (heck, try it for 10 minutes!) without judging anyone, or anything – including yourself… Allowing yourself to be without resistance to any person, place or experience… being present, open, and breathing freely.
I believe judgment is a result of discomfort with the present moment – when there’s something about the moment we don’t like or are not comfortable with, we put judgment in there to create space between it (what ever we are in resistance to) and ourselves.
Yoga is a practice of UNION, which means we actually want to move towards everything in our lives… We want to merge with our life creating an alignment to our inner Truth. Resistance and the resultant judgment create separation – moving us further from our goal of union, and out of alignment with the universe and each other.
Here’s the experiment I suggest: Over the next week, notice when judgment comes up (and try not to judge your judgment – totally serious). When you find yourself judging, notice how you FEEL – what is the emotion that has triggered this need to separate. Then, whether you figure it out or not, BREATHE.
I want to be clear, I’m not saying that it is easy to be non-judgmental – with ourselves or others. What I am saying is that letting go of the resistances we hold creates more freedom and connection – more opportunity for love and joy.
Let me know how your experiment goes!
Mona teaches Ayurvedic Yoga at the Janati Yoga School in Kingston Ontario, where she lives with her wonderful husband, their enthusiastic dog, and ninja kitten. When she’s not teaching, practicing or talking about yoga, you might find her enjoying a good meal, kayaking, climbing a mountain in Ireland, or zip-lining over a forest in Costa Rica, Roatan, or Whistler BC.