So long as you approve, you are judging. Approval and disapproval are two ends of judgment.
"But wait," you say, "aren't I entitled to like something more than something else?"
But of course you are.
When someone offers you an apple or an orange, and you prefer the orange, you accept it because that is your preference. You are not sneering at the apple or considering the orange of more value. You are not thinking: "Oh, how can anyone in their right mind choose an apple over an orange?"
You are simply stating your preference.
When two people perform different acts or in a different manner, or appear in different costume, you may look up to one and down on the other. That is judgment.
When it came to the choice of the apple or the orange, you were neutral about it. Your choice was your choice. You held no scorn for the fruit you didn't choose. You simply didn't choose it.
When it comes to people and their acts, your choosing isn't so neutral. It becomes personal. One affronts you, and the other pleases. No more than the innocent apple and orange do other people and their courses of action have to do with you.
It is not your place to be affronted.
You have choices certainly, but to be affronted is not one of them. Being affronted is taking personally that which is someone else's business.
When you are a teacher, and you praise one youngster, by default you are not praising the one next to him. Praise given to one and withheld from another is not such a glorious thing. When you praise, you are approving. By default, you are also disapproving.
Perhaps you are buying a house. Certainly you don't have to buy every house. You are entitled to buy the one you want. Make a choice for the one you want, but don't disparage another, for that will be someone else's choice.
Are you beginning to understand better what neutral means?
It does not mean dullness or disinterest or indifference. It means you have personal preference, but it does not mean you make a proclamation of condemnation or praise. You accept the coexistence of all, and you make your choice.
All the energy and effort that go into trying to make something into what you think it should be! You do that to your children, and you have done it to yourself.
There is a place for everything.
Nothing encroaches on you.
But you fear it does.
And so you judge a book by its cover.
Take out of the library the book you want, but do not scathe the others.
Do not wish someone else's choices out of existence.
In your mind, you have often squashed others' ideas, and so you have often squashed other people. That is tantamount to eradicating them. Disapproval is erasure. Be not a destroyer of hearts. Be an innocent passerby. Be a nodder at other people's hearts.
Know what is your business and know what is another's.
Know what is your domain and what is another's.
When you accept yourself as a Human being making his way in the world as best you can at this moment, then you will accord the same to those around you.
If everyone deserves My love, and you deserve My love, then can you not allow others to be at peace?
You are king of yourself, and of no other. For all are kings and queens in their own lives. I have appointed them.
Do not give your selfhood away, and do not grab another's.
Bestow your blessing upon freedom of choice.
Bless the creation entire.
Roll over, and bless it to itself.
And when you feel you cannot, bless it to Me.