At some point in existence, the individual has made some form of allegorical salad of judgment towards another for what they have acquired, worn, studied, achieved or lack of accolades. Let’s toss in some pity, cultural diversity, and etiquette, adding a tablespoon of spending habits, physical appearance and where one is to stand on the political spectrum. That’s quite an unappetizing salad. Croutons of social euphemisms included.
You can have a pile of degrees, badges of merit, certificates of distinction, a lengthy resume of brilliant institutes of education, but if you do not have compassion for those that have chosen a different life path from you then you have, despite all your textbooks, failed to understand the human condition.
In no way am I begrudging the facilities of learning that have been the pillars of socio-economic norm for decades, nor am I advocating the dismissal of further education. I simply wonder why what we study encompasses who we are as a whole? And why it gives us the right to categorize others based on what they do. I am sure theorists would say that it is both the subconscious and conscious that creates this belief system seasoning that salad with childhood conditioning. Being a believer in the university of pragmatism, I have learnt through my travels that at times an agricultural farmer in rural Tanzania seems to possess more intelligence and compassion for his fellow beings than a professional in the west.
Whether we like it or not, there is a caste system in everything that we do. First, business, economy. Bronze, silver, and gold, diploma versus degrees, preferred seating and VIP lineup’s. The distinctions are inevitable but do they set us apart from the fundamentals of who we really are? If we pride ourselves in being unique individuals why do we have to fall into pre-set categories? We are judged almost instantly by what we do for a living and not what we do to make the world better for the living.
What would happen if we lost the judgment and began to accept that life offers different paces? Some people were meant to run faster than others whilst others were meant to walk with elegance. In a much larger sense, we are part of a whole stream of thought, intertwined on an esoteric level and the lives we lead play a relevant part in that whole. Personally, I find judgment a form of projection. I know I am going to have to duck tomatoes for that statement, but I strongly feel that when we lack something within ourselves we decide to point out insufficiency in those around us.
Regardless of what it is we do, or how much we earn, look like and so on, we must ask ourselves what our duty is to fellow man. It is an eternal question that for the most part is shoved under the rug of the fast paced lives that we lead. The bigger question is how do we treat those around us, irrespective of our station in life and what can we do to explore the internal kindness that we have a homage to exude.
My hope is that in the great kitchen of life perhaps we can create a salad of a new variety. One that houses leafy ideals in a vast bowl brimming with seeds of kindness and the understanding that every person is complex and these very complexities, even though they may not be understood, make a beautiful human being. None of us are alike yet we all share a core that seeks eternal happiness. Now toss in some seasoning of change, a dollop of humanitarianism and a dash of acceptance. The recipe is worth memorizing for a salad like that. Croutons of empathy included.