Today, for the first time in a very long time, I went to church. Not the type of church I tried to fit myself into when I was younger, this place is a bit different. It is profoundly accepting. I could not count the number of churches, the different denominations and eventually religions I investigated over the years. Each one brought I new hope that I had found the one I belonged to but this hope was always short lived. Sometimes I knew right away that I was in the wrong place, other times it took me a while. During this while I would try to get involved a bit and try to fit myself in the mold of that particular group, but there would always be the nagging feeling that I did not fit into this mold and I would be found out, not accepted and shamed. This notion would occasionally become reality. So I have let go of my process. I will not try to fit myself into someone else's specific expectations, I go as I am and nothing else. I do not fear nonacceptance or worse. It is a welcome sign that I must be on my way. There is a difference between universal admittance and universal acceptance. Most churches offer the former but I was in search for the later.
But it looks like I found one that I mesh well with without effort and I am pretty excited.
It is a church that accepts and celebrates everyone just as they are, and I don't mean just welcoming everyone then challenging their personal attributes as some churches have tried with me in the past. There appears to be little in the way of judgement which brings me to the whole point of this post. We were asked to make a wish. A big, influential wish. I thought about this deeply, however briefly and decided that the worst thing in the world are the judgments we place on others and ourselves. These judgments create all the great problems in the world. There could not exploitation if someone had not made a judgement that those they exploit are not as worthy as themselves. There could be no genocides if one group had not judged another inferior of life. There would be no poverty if employers had not made the judgement that their employees where not worth an acceptable wage or that one country was less deserving of resources than another. Many in my generation who search for employment would have it if we collectively had not been judged as lazy. I suspect much depression, disordered eating, addiction and mental anguish could be avoided if we avoided the harsh judgement we place on ourselves.
These judgments spread like viruses, and once they are shared with us by another, they are planted in our minds and difficult to uproot.
I did not wish to end these judgments however. That would be a pretty lame wish. It is negative, focusing on what should not be done when I needed to look from the other direction. So I wished for universal acceptance for all people. And all day long I have been witnessing these acts of acceptance. I had never noticed them before.