Has this thought ever crossed your mind? Probably not. And if it did, I am certain your answer would have been “Never!”
We simply never admit that we could be wrong. After all, each and every one of us considers himself/herself to be the center of the universe. The universe may change, stars may be born, stars may fade into white stars but we are always the center of the universe.
It is always “I, Me… Mine”
If there is one person we know intimately, it is ourselves. We go about this world observing, trying to understand the world we are in. Everything that we know is based on the reasoning of our minds. Oftentimes our reasoning is erroneous and we come to false conclusions. We make assumptions about things. Then we go about building layer over layer, based on faulty reasoning and incorrect assumptions.
Of course, our entire edifice of our knowledge is based on a fundamental rule – “I am always right”. So despite of our incorrect understanding of the way things work we go about under the belief that what we know is correct and above any blemish.
When we argue with our friends, spouse or our colleagues we do so based on our incorrect and often inaccurate view of reality.
So it does not make sense to be inflexible when there is a difference of opinion. It often helps, if we could step back for a moment and consider the fact that we could be wrong.
This would result in a lot of your beliefs and assumptions to come crashing down. But this is an exercise that we should do. Firstly it will help us to correct our own assumptions about the world, and secondly it will also make way for us to change and learn new things.
So, every now and then, step back and look at your own assumptions.
You could be wrong!
Be humble! We are told as children by our elders. However as we grow up we realize that this is by no means an easy task. We as human beings always crave for attention. When we have achieved something or performed any noteworthy act we generally want to shout out from roof tops or mountain tops. We want to let the whole world know of our accomplishments. We want to just sit back and bask in the warmth of appreciation, recognition. We want to wallow in our own pride.
While it is not wrong to want recognition and appreciation we need to be very careful in the way we handle the approbation that comes our way. We need to have the maturity to handle the praise. We need to be humble. What is exactly referred to as humility is nothing more than being able to receive all commendation with poise. We need to receive the ensuing fame with a calmness and equanimity.
Humility is essentially the virtue of not getting carried away with fame. All praise we receive is transitory in nature and we should not fool ourselves into believing that we have super human abilities. We need to be able to take a balanced approach towards life whether it is praise or criticism. This is the mark of mature individual. The perils of being drunk with one’s own self glory are that we become lost and start behaving foolishly. We lose track of our capabilities and start thinking that we can achieve anything. If we approach life with humility with the knowledge that we are mortal and all fame is transitory then we can ensure that we keep performing and becoming better and better at thing. Humility does not diminish praise but ensures that we can act effectively regardless of any success. If we get carried away too easily with appreciation we will also tend to be hurt when there is criticism.
So, whenever we achieve success we must be humble and take all recognition and appreciation in our stride. If we take this approach to life we can achieve even bigger and better things in life.