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Humility

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Interbane

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Humility

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DH: "Is arrogance irrational? At what point does love of self become arrogant...when it becomes unreasonable? Is pride irrational?"This got me thinking about humility. A small dose of pride is in everyone, but some people are overflowing with it to the point of nausea. I don't think pride is irrational, but some actions resulting from excessive pride may be irrational.Link on business and humilityIn that link, it speaks of people having the 'seed' within them, that could be cultivated to make them more humble. Do you think that's possible? I think if there's one bit of wisdom atheists should pick from the bible above all else, it should be about pride. Not how it ties into loving God, you know my stance on that. Rather, how it can be destructive, it's the deadliest of the seven sins.Greek tragedies had their plots set around hubris, fatally excessive pride. Where the main character created his own demised through his excessive pride.Anyone have wisdom on humility?
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Humility

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In Karate the first lesson of a serious student is often humility. In more than 20 years of training I learned this lesson well. In every school I attended I learned something new, so it was clear I did not know it all. No matter how good I became, how fast or strong I conditioned my body to become, there was always someone out there who could beat me. It got to the point where those individuals were very few but I still know they are out there. This lesson is a fact of life in all disciplines. Later
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Revolutionary Humility

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Christ has set us an example of humility (Phil. 2:6-8 )This is from Paul's letter to the Church in Phillipi, written while he is imprisoned by the Empire for offering a radical alternative to Roman salvation.In this sense, humility is not servile aquiescence or personal abasement; i.e., humiliation. Nor is it simply making oneself teachable, open to the tutelage and instruction of others; i.e., being willing to learn.The example of humility that Paul refers to is a kind of radical engagement and personal confrontation with the ruling power structures; i.e., revolution. Humility is revolutionary. Another word worth considering in this context is hubris. Hubris is an over-reaching self-estimation; a kind of boastful insolence in the face of facts, fates or the gods; or a deluded notion of grandiose self-importance that is often followed by a painful collision with reality and the fact of one's limitations. In this sense, Humility protects us from Hubris.Thus Humility is the presence of mind that motivates revolution against oppressive structures; but keeps us free of the grandiose exaggerations of hubris.Humility is proper reverence for our Humanity. Edited by: Dissident Heart at: 2/2/06 11:53 am
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Interbane

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Re: Revolutionary Humility

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Do you think an arrogant person, after learning the virtue of humility, could change himself to become more humble?
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Re: Revolutionary Humility

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Interbane: Do you think an arrogant person, after learning the virtue of humility, could change himself to become more humble?Perhaps the negative effects of Hubris are an essential component of learning Humility: the crashing conclusion that you are not God forces an attitude adjustment. The delusions of superiority and control give way to the facts of ineptitude and weakness; not by simple cognition: but by a painful awareness brought dragging and screaming to a humble conclusion.Will this awareness stick? For some it lasts, while for others it is a momentary blip in a general tendency toward tyranny and domination. I think it is a lifelong practice: a continuous struggle to mature in reverence for who I am, which is always a matter of relationships with others. The lure of domination and fantasies of revenge are powerful obstacles to Humility; as is the easy route of compliance to the tyranny of the Herd or of Masters.A hunch I follow is that folks gathered together in mutual reverence for themselves and each other is one way to facilitate growth in Humility; as it is a powerful force in confronting tyrants, and encouraging the humiliated.
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Re: Revolutionary Humility

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I was referring more to the case where a person isn't scalded by hubris. He just comes to understand that humility is good, so makes a personal decision to become more humble.I think it's possible, I've been experimenting with being more humble. Some things I've noticed are then when I analyze my behavior in retrospect, I pick out acts that are more humble than others, and tell myself "that's a good act". Then in the future, not only do I have that association and act in a more humble way, but I start to gain the perspective of a person with greater humility. By acting, I become.
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Re: Revolutionary Humility

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Interbane: I was referring more to the case where a person isn't scalded by hubris. He just comes to understand that humility is good, so makes a personal decision to become more humble.If we see humility as a truly radical kind of behavior; something that upsets and disrupts the power of tyrants, bullies and other hubristic arses; really changing the ways relationships, communtites and power structures hold together...then it seems the one who chooses humility must be aware of the risk involved. It is a high stakes kind of choice, full of threat and peril. The Hubristic are quick to Humiliate the Humble: silencing the critic, disappearing the dissident, crucifying the prophet, etc..Imagine we have only three choices: We can be Hubristic, Humble or Humiliated. Maybe we travel through each throughout our lives. The Humiliated need the Humble to get out from under the boot of the Hubristic; and the Hubristic need the Humble to expose the ways they are Humilating others. In any case, it is not simply an individual exercise: something done alone and in my head. It takes a network of relationships: assisting, reminding, encouraging, challenging, confronting.
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Re: Revolutionary Humility

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DH: "If we see humility as a truly radical kind of behavior; something that upsets and disrupts the power of tyrants, bullies and other hubristic arses; really changing the ways relationships, communtites and power structures hold together..."In many of your posts, it seems you leap to conclusions about how individual traits or other minor things affect society as a whole. I'm not saying you're wrong, but I also don't think your conclusions are correct. It's very hard to determine what individual effects do to a whole that is as complex as modern society. The effects an society from these individual traits may be as great as you say, or may be very small, and in some cases may have an opposite effect than what you propose. Making assumptions like this is fun at times, but does little to further the discussion. I don't mean to antagonize you, but when your replies fall into this type, there's nothing substantial to reply to. There are a million 'what ifs' that we may come up with in all these discussions, but to look into all of them is a waste of time.
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Radical Humility

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Interbane: it seems you leap to conclusions about how individual traits or other minor things affect society as a whole. I'm not saying you're wrong, but I also don't think your conclusions are correct. It's very hard to determine what individual effects do to a whole that is as complex as modern society.I don't see Humility as a minor thing, nor is it simply an individual exercise: it is a lifelong practice in making and maintaining relationships, that is also shaped within these relationships. And I argue that relationships which encourage and nurture Humility are disruptive to systems of hubristic domination and hierarchical abuse: the Humble are not cowed or bullied nor tyrannized into Humilation; and this is due to their particular reverence for themselves and others. I think this kind of reverence is revolutionary, and can profoundly upset status quos dependent upon Hubris and Humilitation. I argue that this kind of reverence, Humility, will challenge any social and interpersonal system it enters into: from the simplest exchange between strangers, to the schoolyard, the workplace, the community gathering, boardroom, etc...and this is the radicality I am describing. I agree that we don't know how this will impact society as a whole: too many variables in too many directions occuring all at once. But I do think no matter what Humility will ultimately lead to, it is reasonable to accept it will shake things up: confronting the Hubrist and encouraging the Humiliated.Are you arguing that confronting Hubristic bullies and tyrants, and encouraging those who have been Humiliated will have no effect on relationships both large and small? Edited by: Dissident Heart at: 2/5/06 3:32 pm
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Re: Radical Humility

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DH: "I don't see Humility as a minor thing, nor is it simply an individual exercise:"In the context of the entire world, the humility of one person is indeed minor. I'm not talking about some prominent figure that you may be able to pick out either. I think this one went right over your head. I speak of the humility of one person, and you go on to say how humility can impact all of society in an over-dramatized fashion. Sure, if a great many people suddenly become humble, society may feel the effects, but what happened to the topic I wanted to discuss? You shifted it to an unrelated angle on humility.DH: "the Humble are not cowed or bullied nor tyrannized into Humilation; and this is due to their particular reverence for themselves and others."How do you know?DH: "Are you arguing that confronting Hubristic bullies and tyrants, and encouraging those who have been Humiliated will have no effect on relationships both large and small?"No, but that's not even on topic, that would be for another thread. I asked if it were possible for one person to realize the importance of humility and change himself. I'm asking this because it's of personal importance. Not only for myself, but someone I know.Sometimes I feel like any questions asked are responded to with an unnecessarily complex answer that in some cases doesn't even apply. I know you're just relaying your thoughts, but try to stay on topic or I'll kick you in the teeth.
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