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March 19, 2006

Humility

Humility is a state of the mind. It is not an attitude.

When we know a little, we know we know, and we think we know a lot. But, as we know more and more, we know that we don't know that much more. This leads to a stage where, when we know a lot, we know that we really don't know. We then know that we are totally ignorant, and ignorance is all over us. Ignorance stands before our eyes like a giant in front of our eyes, dwarfing the knowledge we have gained. Perhaps, true education is when the knowledge that we are hopelessly and helplessly ignorant arises in our mind.

In that state, arises the condition of humility.

Humility is also a natural result of actions performed for the sake of the action, and not as a means to achieve an end, for when actions are performed for actions' sake, the end result is of no relevance to the doer.

7 Comments:

Blogger Trespasser said...

I can't seem to understand how you connect humility to the veil of ignorance. Humilityu is having the willingness to stoop down to the poorest of the poor, listening to the poor with a big heart. [By poor, I mean poor in knowledge]

As regards Karma, it is best to be a Karma Yogi. When you say - "Humility is also a natural result of actions performed for the sake of the action", I guess you are right if you mean to say that detached action results in humility too.

09:55  
Blogger arbit said...

p krishna said the same da...nice post..

Basically when you know that there are infinite universes(:-)) and that there is infinite knowledge, you are simply in awe and humility, ofcourse is a bi-product!!

15:12  
Blogger Vinay said...

hu·mil·i·ty n.

The quality or condition of being humble.

hum·ble (hŭm'bəl) pronunciation
adj., -bler, -blest.

1. Marked by meekness or modesty in behavior, attitude, or spirit; not arrogant or prideful.
2. Showing deferential or submissive respect: a humble apology.
3. Low in rank, quality, or station; unpretentious or lowly: a humble cottage.

tr.v., -bled, -bling, -bles.

1. To curtail or destroy the pride of; humiliate.
2. To cause to be meek or modest in spirit.
3. To give a lower condition or station to; abase. See synonyms at degrade.


Now aht are these new definiotions of urs?
Gowdre me total bulb

18:25  
Blogger Trespasser said...

The veil of ignorance will lead to humility but the stages of exuded confidence may not necessarily be non-humble. One can be humble when one has little knowledge as well. Knowledge is not a binding condition for humility.

19:59  
Blogger The Ignoramus said...

@trespasser

i meant doing actions because fully knowing they are your duty, and that it is an assigned duty to you, and therefore, you know it is not your work, but you are only the agent. Humility is born out of this.

Next, it is not a question of how much you know, before you know you don't know. It happens at some stage. Could happen even when you know nothing, or it need not happen if you have digested the encyclopedia. It depends on what is there in one's consciousness.

What you are saying about exuded confidence is something i agree. I wouldn't call is confidence though. Because, after being humble, there will come a stage, where you no longer care about it. Then, your humility is not necessarily seen outside (check the dictionary definition given by vinay). I would call it a state of neither being humble nor proud. Its a state beyond both.

@vinay

dictionary writers are fools. They also give meanings to words like God, Love etc.

20:21  
Blogger pushkala said...

ram...catch me if i m wrong!!

humilty coupled with ignorance (i dnt knw anething!) is different from the ignorance couple with knowlegde (i knw things, but still ...!)
former needs humility to accept the fact that he needs to learn.. latter needs humilty to accept the fact that his knowledge isnt the limit

13:48  
Blogger Akshaya Aradhya said...

Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

20:45  

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