Letting go of good and bad

Why would I want to let go of good and bad? Do these words help when you use them to describe yourself?

I know that for myself when I label myself bad I tend to classify myself as bad to the core, beyond any hope of redemption and healing! When I label myself as good I either think of myself as being beyond reproach, or I don’t believe the statement.

What about using them when to describe others? Well when you label someone as good aren’t you putting them on a pedestal? When you say someone is bad aren’t you reducing their worth so that they are beneath you?

Are these judgments worth making? Do they put us into a place of calm and serenity, or do they place us into a negative dark place? I say the latter.

OK so then how can I modify my language to not fall into that trap? If I must use those words I will say something along the lines of: ‘Their behavior was bad.’ Significantly less judgment and baggage with that statement!

What about when I want to apply those words against myself? I prefer the terms helpful and unhelpful. They carry far less judgment.

  • Helpful – those things that I think, say, or do that decrease suffering in myself or others
  • Unhelpful – those things that I think, say, or do that increase suffering in myself or others

A synonym for these would be skillful and unskillful.

Let go of judgment, that realm belongs to God. Humans can judge but it may not be the most helpful thing that we can do.


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