Humility Contains The Answer

Humility contains in itself the answer to all the great problems of the life of the soul. –Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation

Wisdom literature such as Proverbs in the Hebrew Scriptures or James in the Christian Bible advise us about the danger of pride and the benefits of humility.

But I cannot recall a single list of things to do in order to rid ourselves of pride and acquire humility.

Learning must not do it. Think of the preachers and priests who have stumbled due to pride and yet have been unable to find that humility that precedes repentance. Certainly they have committed every verse relating to pride and humility to memory. Yet…

Does it take a life event? Yet, not that only, but further an event sufficiently traumatic that one is forced to confront oneself honestly? Or, did some people acquire humility early as part of childhood development? Or, is there a path of spiritual discipline that leads us toward it?

It must be an attitude we can acquire. Merton continues in that paragraph, “It is the only key to faith, with which the spiritual life begins: for faith and humility are inseparable.”

Perhaps it is because some fervently desire to know God and the path toward faith leads also to humility.

Much to meditate on here.

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