Stop Making Judgments; Start Paying Attention
A young student asks Sadhguru how to let go of judgments . Sadhguru responds, don’t make judgments and then try to let them go – simply don’t make them! When you think too much of yourself, he says, you will make judgments without even looking. But if you realize how little you know, then you will pay attention to everything.
Q: Sadhguru, you have said that we have to see things the way they are, but for us to do that we have to let go of our judgments. So how do we let go of our judgments?
Sadhguru: Why do you make them and then try to let them go? Just do not make them. A judgment is an assumption. Right now I look at this person and think, "Oh, she is brilliant, she is silly, she is good, she is bad." These are all assumptions. Why not simply look without making assumptions? This is something that, as young people, you must cultivate. If you do not want to make judgments, you have to bring a certain equanimity to your mind. Only that mind sees clearly, others are all rubbish – opinions and opinions and opinions. They are not seeing reality. Some time ago this book, a compilation of talks, came to me for the title. I said, "Of Mystics and Mistakes." Our publication department said, "Sadhguru, this title is too harsh, will rub people the wrong way!" I said, "That is the intention."
Paying Attention to Life
People must know that you are either a mystic or a mistake. There is no other way. Either you see things just the way they are, or you are making things up in your head. Your head is not here to make up things. You do not have intelligence to make up opinions. You are equipped with such intelligence so that you can see things beyond their surface level manifestation.
You are able to see things for what they really are, not what they are on the surface. This is what human intelligence is about. Intelligence should be penetrative, not hallucinatory. Your judgments are hallucinatory. The moment you think this is good and this is bad, then everyone falls into some category.
You must understand, every life is a unique life. No one falls into any category. If you know how to identify the uniqueness of every creature around us – not just humans, every life around us – you will see how tremendous every life is.
All of you should spend some time paying attention to some life, not human beings. Let’s say an ant. I spent an enormous amount of time looking at ants because, as I looked at the ant more and more, I thought it is one of the greatest pieces of machinery on the planet. If you could create a vehicle which moves like an ant, would it not be the best vehicle we have? Now, if we could see everything the way it is, we would not have to go on making scientific discoveries and stupid observations as we do once in twenty-five years.
We know we were wrong twenty-five years ago and again we are going to be wrong in twenty-five years' time. If you paid enough attention to every life, you would know the relevance of every life in this existence. If you do not already know this, if the worms on this planet disappear right now, all life on this planet will disappear in twelve to eighteen months. If the insects disappear, all life on this planet will disappear in three to four years' time. But if you and I disappear, if the entire human race disappears, the planet will flourish.
A Super Micro Speck
In the order of significance for life upon this planet, we are at the lowest, but we think too much of ourselves. When you think too much of yourself, you will make judgments and judgments and judgments. No matter who you are – not just now, even towards the end of your life, even if you have grasped enormously, still, what we know is a miniscule amount in this cosmos. If you are constantly aware of this, you would not make judgments about anything. When you think you know it all, that is when you make judgments. You are a super, super micro speck in the existence. If you are conscious of it, you will not make judgments. If you think you are very big, it is natural for you to make judgments.
Do not try to let go of the judgments – there is no such thing. Let go of the rubbish that you believe about yourself. Are people teaching you, "Believe in yourself?" Just know that you are a bloody fool who does not even know the nature of your own existence. This is the reality of a human being. To know that “I am stupid,” takes a lot of intelligence. The difference between an intelligent person and a fool is; an intelligent person knows that he is a fool, but a fool does not know that he is a fool. That is a big difference. If you know you are a fool, you will not make any judgments. You will pay more and more attention to everything. If you realize you know very little, you will pay enormous attention to everything. If you think you know it all, even without looking you make judgments.
Editor’s Note: Find more of Sadhguru’s insights in the book “Of Mystics and Mistakes.” Download the preview chapter or purchase the ebook at Isha Downloads.