Are your lens clean?
June 27, 2012 2 Comments
We all judge. And sometimes those judgements are covered by our own inner foulness we carry. For example. I was in line at a local drug store. This was several years ago and I actually used a bit of that experience to write a little short story, “the train before sunset”. Anyway, the real story was that I had come back from a dinner party and was very dressed up in traditional clothing. There was a man behind me at the line. He looked to be in his twenties. Caucasian and very heavily tattooed. He looked tough and quite scary to me. In my head, I instantly boxed him into a specific category. He stared at me with unwavering intensity that also alarmed me. I immediately assumed he was a Muslim hater and intended me harm. I live in a very not so diverse part of the country, although alhamdullah I have never experienced anything beyond stares and rude comments. Anyways, I left the store in a hurry and the young man existed the store right after me. I was shocked when he called after me, but rather than the profanity that I expected, he smiled, said sorry kindly in that he didn’t want to scare me and complimented me on how beautiful he thought I was. It was also very strange how instantly the mirror in which I saw him was transformed. He no longer respresented a threat, but he looked even boyish. It’s amazing how powerful a smile can be. I’ll stop myself, before I start rambling again. I can go on about many examples about the uncleanness of our lens, but here is a short good story that I found in my old files. Not sure of the source.
“A young couple moves into a new neighborhood. The next morning, while they are eating breakfast, the young woman sees her neighbor hang the wash outside.
That laundry is not very clean, she said, she doesn’t know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs better laundry soap.
Her husband looked on, but remained silent. Every time her neighbor would hang her wash to dry, the young woman would make the same comments.
About one month later, the woman was surprised to see a nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband:
“Look! She has learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this.”
The husband said: “I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows!”
And so it is with life:
“What we see when watching others depends on the purity of the window through which we look. Before we give any criticism, it might be a good idea to check our state of mind and ask ourselves if we are ready to see the good rather than to be looking for something in the person we are about to judge.” [Author Unknown]