We, from Friday’s Faith and Science group, are in the first hallway of Caroline Myss’ Entering the Castle. Yesterday’s discussion was focused on humility, and invariably we began to relate times when we were humiliated by someone else.
It’s a common theme. Most of us have experienced humiliation in high school. Teachers have a way of putting us down, making us submissive to their thinking, but whether or not it was meant in a harmful way is always a point of debate. Teenagers think they know everything, so being humbled before your peers is not a pleasant place to be.
My brush with humiliation came in Mr. Nattress’ grade 9th math class. I had thought of myself as pretty smart when it came to numbers, so when I was asked to answer a question posed by my teacher, I got up and said, “Ah…” The class responded with “Dah.”
That was probably the last time I interjected a hesitation sound at the beginning of a sentence in public. Today, if I need to think out my answer before speaking, I remain silent. It also makes my audience pay closer attention to what I finally say.
Humility as a Suit of Armour
Years later in high school, Mr Broughton, in his science class, was taking roll call. He called out “Thorpe” (my surname in those days) and then made a crack about it sounding like a ‘brick hitting the floor’. By then, I was more humble, and I was able to laugh at his joke along with the rest of the class. Something had changed. I was no longer vulnerable.
When we are proud and boastful, someone else will try to take us down a peg or two. That’s when we feel resentful. And, a lot of the time, we plot ways to get back at our ‘enemies’. In truth, we are our own worst enemy. We set ourselves up for the fall, and then blame others when it happens. Unfortunately, that’s the dog-eat-dog world ethic.
Proverbs 16:18 King James Version (KJV)
18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
End of this lesson.