Should you judge other people?
When you call someone “judgy” or “judgmental,” that’s taken as an insult. A caring friend, many believe, offers a “no judgment zone.” Some tell us to follow the biblical advice: “Judge not, that ye be not judged.”
But can this approach really guide us in our daily life and thinking?
No. On the contrary: in life it’s crucial to form moral judgments of other people — and act on your evaluation.
That’s what I argued in a recent webinar, part of ARI’s weekly series Philosophy for Living on Earth,drawing on Ayn Rand’s moral theory. Essential to Rand’s view is that our moral judgments must be objective, not emotion-driven. To reach objective evaluations is a serious responsibility. It’s a task, she observes, “that requires the most precise, the most exacting, the most ruthlessly objective and rational process of thought.” An aspect of what’s so distinctive in Rand’s perspective is that moral judgment is primarily about seeking out, nurturing, supporting the good people in our life and world (not just identifying the people to shun, avoid, condemn).
One highlight of the webinar was having my colleague Aaron Smith moderate the Q&A portion and also join in the discussion. A fascinating issue that came up early on: what are some reasons that people are reluctant to engage in moral judgment?
Watch the video of the webinar, or download the episode on the ARI Live! podcast (Apple Podcasts, Stitcher). And join us next time by subscribing to the series.
Subscribe to New Ideal to receive the latest in-depth content from ARI.
Readers seeking a superior print result may wish to download the free Just Read app.