Humility is the world’s antidote to self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is the disease that assumes that if I say so, it must be so, and if I want it, I ought to have it. A lot of domestic and otherwise wars could be prevented with the slightest touch of humility.-Joan Chittister
Seeing with Our Souls
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I keep practicing humility, but am unsure if I get it right. There’s just too much self-involvement, too much of me who wants to take credit for things, who wants other people to notice his accomplishments, who feels that what he says is very important all the time and should be heeded. I think that over the years, that part of me has lessened its influence, but it’s definitely still there, still a part of who I am. I don’t know if I qualify as self-righteous, but I don’t know if I alter as humble.
Just look at the benefits that humility can bring us. We can have less conflict in our lives, fewer arguments and disagreements, if we were just to be a bit more humble a bit more often–and probably a bit more sincere. Humility cloaks us in authenticity, for the humble person has no need or desire to be someone else or to put anyone else down for any reason. When not concerned with showing the world how great we are, we’re free to be ourselves and respect ourselves. And when we respect ourselves, we do not need to try to make others think more of us.
There’s no need to put ourselves down to be humble. Some of the strongest people I’ve ever known have been incredibly humble, so their strength was something that they didn’t need to show off. When you meet people like this, they share a common strength that doesn’t need any words to call attention to itself. They’re nice to be around because I never, ever fear that they will put me down to make themselves look better, and I sincerely hope that others feel that way with me.
I keep trying, and I’ll keep on trying until the day I die, I suppose. If I lose my humility, I risk becoming arrogant, unpleasant, or prideful, and I hope that I don’t take the route of any of those. I want the humility that breeds my compassion and authenticity, which will help me lead a life that will benefit others because I realize that they’re all just as important as I am all the time.
Questions to consider:
What do you think are some of the benefits of humility?
Why do so few people value the concept of humility?
How might we practice becoming more humble people?
For further thought:
No need to discount yourself in order to achieve humility; neither can you attain humility by overestimating what you are. Humility is your correct weight; no more, no less.-Fred van Amburgh