Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Can NEVER Be Too Humble

For most people, if they really knew anything about humility, they wouldn’t like it.


Because the art of humility is a selfless act. It is recognizing that ideas can come from other people, is the willingness to change your mind, is being able to admit mistakes when you make them, and is being willing to learn from the mistakes of others, rather than punishing them. Often it means doing what you always don’t want to do. Sometimes it means going down with the ship so that others may live. And always, it means killing the egotistical, self-centered person inside all of us who wants to be comforted, petted and admired. That is why so few people practice it – because they want it to be about them and find it difficult when it isn’t.

So, what is the first step to humility?

It is is to realize that we lack it.

It does not mean to recognize and admit, “I am proud.” Because it is not that simple. It’s like the old joke, “I won a medal for being humble, but I wore it so they took it away.” If you claim to be humble, then by necessity you are not. And if you think you are not conceited, it means you are very conceited indeed. That is the paradox of humility: If you think you have it, you don’t. Because imagine someone bragging about how humble they are?

You might as well look up the definition of an oxymoron.

It is also not to say that you must admit you are prideful solely because if you don’t, you will not be considered humble. And at the same token don’t feel you must admit you are at wrong when you have never to anyone’s knowledge, including yourself, been wrong – because then it is doubtful if you are truly that. So, don’t read too deep into the art of humility.

Real humility is more than a gesture - it has to come from the genuine belief that serving others matters more than serving ourselves!

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