Pride – How to be Proud of Yourself without being Prideful?
Maitreya’s teaching, “Pride is one of the worst issues to have on your metaphysical/ spiritual path, for it is a barrier to the truth.” jolted me in my thinking.
Well, to be honest, I have always been “proud of my pride” and couldn’t see why it can be wrong. For me, being proud of something or myself, was always “the thing”, a sense of achievement, a pleasure of accomplishment and always a joyful moment, especially in my shameful moments of low self-esteem and problems with self-worth that I carried from my childhood. Pride is not a synonym for vanity or egoism and that’s why it cannot be ever wrong. It represents self-worth, even though we can see someone’s pride as arrogance. But it startled me, so I made myself think this over on a deeper level. I, even did a little research about the meaning of the pride and learned that Theologians and some philosophers reserved a special rank for pride :“Of the seven deadly sins, Lust, Envy, Anger, Greed, Gluttony and Sloth are all bad , but Pride is the deadliest of all, the root of all evil, the beginning of sin.”
Wow! Being proud is not a virtue but a sin?!
I don’t prefer biblical phrases like sin, hell, evil, etc. but it does give the meaning a different connotation.
In a way, it makes a lot of sense. It does prevent one in becoming truthful and spiritual. Of course, I can clearly see and understand why pride can represent obstacles in relationships for instance. You can’t have pride and love in same sentence.
The Ego is the one who wants pride, prize, recognition. It goes “Hey, look at me! Look at my achievement! I am nothing if I can’t show off and nobody knows about it”. The Higher self is satisfied just with the simple fact that something is done right. It doesn’t need applause from anyone. And that is the path we have to follow and focus upon. It is the only right way among many. And yes, being truthful, especially being true to yourself, and being able to see through many different layers of self, represents the beginning step of spirituality, because everything else that you have done till this moment was only a preparation for a “race” and not “a race” itself.
And yes, I am a little bit proud of myself to get it, I have to admit.