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Word Gems 

exploring self-realization, sacred personhood, and full humanity


Editor's 1-Minute Essay: 




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John Ruskin: “The first test of a truly great man is his humility. By humility I don't mean doubt of his powers or hesitation in speaking his opinion, but merely an understanding of the relationship of what he can say and what he can do.”







Editor's prefatory comment:

I decided to create the “Humility” topic-icon when I discovered the following instruction in the Course In Miracles,” Lesson 61.

Humility, properly crafted in one’s spirit, is something different than we’ve heard.



1. Who is the light of the world except God’s Son? This, then, is merely a statement of the truth about yourself. It is the opposite of a statement of pride, of arrogance, or of self-deception. It does not describe the self-concept you [the ego] have made. It does not refer to any of the characteristics with which you have endowed your idols. It refers to you as you were created by God. It simply states the truth.

2. To the ego, today’s idea is the epitome of self-glorification. But the ego does not understand humility, mistaking it for self-debase­ment. Humility consists of accepting your role in salvation and in taking no other. It is not humility to insist you cannot be the light of the world if that is the function God assigned to you. It is only arrogance that would assert this function cannot be for you, and arrogance is always of the ego... [Lesson 64] it is only the fear of the ego that induces you to regard yourself as unworthy of the task assigned to you by God...

3. True humility requires that you accept today’s idea because it is God’s Voice which tells you it is true. This is a beginning step in accepting your real function on earth. It is a giant stride to­ward taking your rightful place in salvation. It is a positive assertion of your right to be saved, and an acknowledgment of the power that is given you to save others.


the shameful shuffle

A long time ago, I remember Art Mokarow speaking to us ministerial students. So often, he said, if someone gives us a compliment, we rush to deny its force: “Oh, it’s not that good, nothing special.” Instead, the more clear-eyed, and less defensive, response would be a simple, “Thank you.”

Humility is not meant to be a song-and-dance of doing the shameful shuffle; not about denying who you are, what you’ve done or accomplished. It’s simply taking your rightful place, in the family of God, and feeling good about it.

In the “Human Potential” writing, we’ve seen people like Father Benson speak of our awesome latent abilities, such that, they have “no discernible upward limit.” How do we fit a stellar concept like that into a mold of “Garsh, I’m not really that good”?

We might become uncomfortable with any talk of destined greatness, intrinsic worth, or even personal holiness -- which the Course emphasizes -- because Despotic Ecclesia has done her best to make us feel small, checkered, and no good

Common definitions of ‘humility” are often designed by the ego. It doesn’t want to look too good or too wise, thereby offending others, on its way to gaining advantage over them.

We need to think about these things and gain a realistic perspective of ourselves -- our true selves as opposed to the false -- concerning God’s purpose for us in our lives, and, concomitantly, how that life should be lived.



Editor's last word: