It is really too bad that, while we recognize lapses in judgment or steadfastness in ourselves as merely circumstantial, we quickly assume similar lapses in others as character flaws.
Turn that around and you’ll understand why I stayed up until 2 a.m. finishing critiques for my new writing group. They don’t know me, so protestations about busyness are (at this point) excuses and not reasons.
I know how harshly I would want to judge them (Transform my gracelessness, Lord), and can’t bear my own censure– so I work late, uh, early.
The point of these meetings is feedback and interaction. If I can’t expect that of myself, how can I expect it of them?
I know exactly what you mean with judging other people more harshly.
And it bothers me, b/c we’re supposed to “love [others] as you love yourself.” I appreciate how neatly C.S. Lewis defined this, through starting with our view of ourselves.
He goes on to say we’ll know our attitude is on the right track if we’re relived when we find we were mistaken about the bad things we thought they did.
This, I guess, is my difficulty: I want to treat others the way I want to be treated (with grace and understanding), but so far I’m acting as I must to avoid my own gracelessness, because I know how strong that could be, and I don’t want it directed at me.
It’s like trying to keep two cultures happy at once: it’s not impossible (since I don’t think they’re mutually exclusive), but it requires a coherent awareness that is harder on 4.5 hours of sleep.
Brilliant thoughts. I love CSL.
Awesome! You’re in a writing group. You will grow so much!