Judgement is a word that I came across for the first time in school when I was 12 years old. I was in a Christian Mission School, and in assembly “judgement day’ was often used. I did not understand the significance, nor I believe, most of the other students there. Perhaps, some of the older Christian students did, but since they were so few, that amongst the others, this was a mysterious aspect of our education, which was kept aside to be faced when the time came, like some mathematical problems that were put aside till examination time came around.

An area, where today, the word is bandied about like rice and curry, sports, the umpire’s or referee’s decision was accepted in toto and no one questioned whether the judgement was right or wrong. There were no disputes from either side.

Things have now changed, and with electronic media covering every second of them, with instant and slow motion replays possible, umpires and referees are having a rough time as one could have seen in the recent wold cup football tournament and many cricket matches. Human fallibility is no longer acceptable and careers can be terminated by wrong judgment.

In real life, one exercises judgment to choose between various choices. Fair enough. Very necessary in our modern complex world. But something funny happens with experience of such exercising of judgments. One turns judgmental and opinionated and life gets to be very unsatisfactory for such people. Prejudices and stereotyping replaces curiosity and a willingness to experience new things and relationships.

I am rarely judgmental and prefer to classify as different rather than better or worse, and this naturally endowed trait has enabled me to enjoy a great variety of experiences in relationships, food, modes of transport, music, books and all forms of entertainment. This sense has enabled me to live a life that has been rich and full and very satisfying and I rarely complain of ‘my lot’.

On the other hand, I have in my life a number of people who are highly judgmental and opinionated and it is sad to see them deny themselves the joy of experiencing variety and diversity. Sadder is their inability to change themselves. This is particularly so in the case of food where hilarious situations can be experienced. For instance, a friend of mine recently was entertained to a lunch at the most famous Lebanese restaurant in Pune. In describing his experience, he was comparing the food with, what he eats at home every day, traditional Indian fare, and complained that it was a total waste of money. I have made a note, not to waste my money treating him to such exotic food in the future. Lesson learnt, but he is different, not better or worse than any of my other friends, and I accept his friendship despite his inability to enjoy variety.

Another insufferable trait of such people is their ardent desire to convert others to their opinions and the amount of effort they put into achieving this. I tend to be flippant around such people and it only infuriates them and they try all the harder to justify and convert my thinking. Pathetic. For me, this behaviour is different, and I accept it for it is worth and modify my behaviour to the extent possible to maintain the relationships.

Let me conclude with a quote which is remarkable by any standard. “Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.” – Albert Einstein.

I hope that you enjoyed reading another post of the Friday Loose Bloggers’ Consortium when eleven of us post on the same topic chosen by one of us. Today’s topic has been chosen by yours truly.

Please do visit Ashok, Conrad, Grannymar, Magpie11, Maria, Gaelikaa, Helen, Judy, Anu and Ginger to see ten other views on the same topic. Some of these bloggers may be preoccupied with vacations, examinations, family problems and/or romance, so be a little indulgent in case they do not post or post late.