There is a practice in Africa called ‘Ubuntu’. When a member of the tribe commits a transgression, the others surround this being and tell them what they love about them. The idea being, someone who is hurting needs compassion not anger. I am reminded of this because of a quote I read recently:. ‘Negative people don’t always occur as negative to me. I like to think their negativity is unfinished hurt, and when I can, I love them without labeling them as negative.’ I also like the quote ‘Be kind. Everyone you meet is is fighting their own battle’.
When I was a child, about eight years old, a very rude customer came into my grandparents’ dress store. After she left, the saleswomen began criticizing: her behavior. My grandmother, who up to this point had been silent, spoke: ‘Never judge someone’, she said’, you have no way of knowing what they are going through, or what their life is like. I always remembered this incident. I like to think it made me slightly less quick to judge others, especially when I don’t know them.