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Greatness Of Humility


Sat­ur­day. [Heb. 5:1–8; Luke 14:1–11] When you are bid­den some­where, do not sit in the high­est place. In sum: always and every­where, seek the lowli­est place. In this sim­ple rule is briefly expressed the entire rich sub­stance of humil­i­ty. Take this rule, sit down and exam­ine all pos‐sible cas­es in your life, and in ad‐vance choose the lowli­est place in each of them. This will be the prac‐tice of humil­i­ty, which will gradual‐ly move from exter­nal deeds to the inner, and will form a sed­i­ment of humil­i­ty there as a foun­da­tion. Time will make this seed to grow a‐midst this prac­tice, and humil­i­ty will at last fill all of your soul and body, and all out­er affairs. What will hap­pen? Moral great­ness will shine on your brow and attract uni‐versal respect; and the words will be ful­filled in you: Whoso­ev­er exalt‐eth him­self shall be abased; and he that hum­bleth him­self shall be exalt‐ed. How­ev­er, do not have this as your inten­tion while prac­tic­ing hu‐mility, but rather humil­i­ty itself. It in and of itself brings a blessed good dis­po­si­tion to the soul. Where hu‐mility comes all inner trou­bles cease and all exter­nal adver­si­ties do not pro­duce star­tling impres­sions. Just as a wave which meets no im‐pediment spills into a bound­less sea with­out noise or crash, so out­er and inner sor­rows do not harm a hum‐ble soul, but are car­ried as though on the sur­face, with­out leav­ing a trace. This is the world­ly advan­tage, so to speak, of a hum­ble per­son. What light from above illu­mines him, what con­so­la­tions are sent, what breadth of free action is re‐vealed! Tru­ly, only humil­i­ty con‐tains it all…

Saint Theo­phan the Recluse