Yom Kippur, 120 Words – Gd Might Judge Favourably
It makes sense to encourage people to judge favourably, because, after all, we do not know the truth
But Gd does know the truth, so how can we request that He judge favourably?
Yet the Gemara provides just such a blessing – As you judged me favourably, may HaShem judge you favourably.
We are capable of simultaneously hosting many inconsistent and even contradictory motivations – all of which contribute to any and probably all our actions.
The Gemara evaluates the culpability of one who in the same activity intends to perform both a Mitzvah and an Aveirah, or who intends to only perform an Aveirah but ends up also performing a Mitzvah. [RaMBaM Shabbos 2:16]
Just as we screen those we love and those we do not with various filters, creating our own imagery of which motivations or justifications form the background, the context, and we see this as the truth – judging favourably need not mean creating a fairy-tale, it might simply be, and more often than not is, just a shifting of emphasis, creation of relevant context – well, Gd is also capable of such screening – when we exert ourselves to want to be better.
We ought also note that all the examples of the Gemara [Shabbos 127b] about judging favourably described accepting the situation [which anyway could not be altered] graciously; it was not about being submissive and permitting oneself to be trampled upon.