Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Humility of Character, Part I

...For Christ, humbling himself was a way to share the lives of his human brothers and sisters.  For us, humility is an acknowledgment that we share the weaknesses and sins of our human brothers and sisters.  Humility is also the recognition that we form one living system with the plants and animals, for all physical things, living and dead, arise ultimately from the humus, the moist ground of virgin earth.  Try as we me to forget it, we will always need to share water and air and sunlight with the plants and the animals.

Humility is an essential part of listening.  Only someone who believes he has something to learn is an attentive listener... 

Humility is not about comparisons with other people, but if we are inclined to make too much of our virtues or achievements, we should remind ourselves of how many people have been able to exceed any accomplishment of ours.  The more we know ourselves, the more we discover we are lower than our image of ourselves.  In knowing ourselves and avoiding making comparisons between ourselves and those we know less well, we should be ready to do them any service or accept any assignment.  Christ did the same.

~ Rev. Hugh Feiss, OSB
in Essential Monastic Wisdom

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