A few things about the state of humility and its immense value in the spiritual practice
by yoga teacher Gregorian Bivolaru
“Humility, or humbleness, is the art that suddenly sends you to yourself, makes you stay with yourself, being humbled in yourself.” (Father Arsenie Papacioc)
“Three things, among others, shall God demand from us, and He demands them with a great ardor: Humility, humility, humility! And then let Me lead you as far as possible!” (Father Arsenie Papacioc)
Many times, human beings do not have the full consciousness of their place and mission in the world, the dimension of their existence and their purpose here on Earth. In modern or, in other words, contemporary times, as his pride of being a rational and free being grew, man lost his real, deep understanding and his true freedom. The atheist materialism that prevails today is only a consequence of the wrong positioning of man to the world in which he lives and to God, whom he rejects.
What most people usually think of as power is in fact an accumulation of ephemeral aspects devoid of authentic value. In reality, man’s true power has nothing to do with the level of his worldly, social or material control, it does not mean either ambition or pride, or enmity, or exacerbated domination, but instead it finds its place alongside modesty, temperance, kindness, tolerance, love and compassion. He is truly powerful the man who dominates himself (and not the one who dominates others), the man who resists the tendencies towards exaltation, the one who is rightly placed in life and fully masters his spiritual attributes, the man who fulfills the law written in his nature and in his destiny, and who does not tremble at death at all, but only trembles at God’s greatness.
Of all the special spiritual qualities that point to the growing proximity to our inner essence, and thus to perfection, humility shines, along with love, as a great jewel in the crown of a king. As hard as it can be to achieve it, it is desired and cherished by all intuitive, elevated and authentic spiritual seekers. It requires, first and foremost, a divine integration of the elements of the personality of the being into the universal Wholeness of the Macrocosm. In Latin, the noun humilitas (humility) is closely related to the adjective humilis (which can be translated as „humble” but also , „on the ground”, „in the ground” or „down”) and is also related to the term humus (earth). Humility is defined as a quality by which a person, having in view his own faults, has a modest opinion of himself and willingly obeys God, but also – wisely – to others, for the sake of God.
Apart from being the weak and helpless man’s appanage, as some deviant occult circles want to imply through its erroneous association with the notion of humiliation, which actually refers to degrading actions, by which the human being is degraded, humility is, on the contrary, a beneficial, essential feature of the powerful, transformed and conscious human being who lives the ineffable mystery of inward communion with God.
Many are wrongly persuaded that this virtue appeared in the history of spiritual life at the same time as Christianity, whose apologists state that without humbleness, the efficient work of divine grace and faith cannot manifest, there cannot be perfect faith, adequate and pious prayer, complete return to God nor a constant perseverance in good.
However, all spiritual traditions and all the great sages, at all times, state that spiritual perfection cannot be attained without the awakening and deepening of the spiritual virtue of humility. In Judaism, for example, it is said that you must first overcome your pride and egoistic sexual desire, because only then you will find humility, and with it you will also discover deep inner divine peace. According to the Qur’an, the word „islam” denotes humbleness, the attainment and deepening of God’s peace, this being the only and true religion of Arabs. In this sense, the verse XIX, aphorism 3, states: „In the eyes of God, the true religion is in fact a great humility (Islam).” In Hinduism, it is often said that genuine love, which is uplifting towards God, can only be infused into the heart of the humble, who is completely detached from ephemeral or material desires. Humility or humbleness is one of the most admirable and most important Christian virtues, being called in truth, the foundation of all the other ones.
Thus, for example, the full faith in God is the humility of the mind; obedience is the humility of will; and sincere repentance is the humility of lusts and passions.
Humility is the virtue through which the genuine aspirant fully realizes that it is from God that he received all his gifts and good attributes, and therefore he never boasts of them. The more he is pervaded by the great divine merit of his nature and the divine height of his calling, the more he will know to appreciate the gifts given by God to his neighbor. He also recognizes both his weaknesses and his dependence on all and all of God, seeing both in his own existence and in all manifestations of the phenomenal world, the various expressions of the just and omnipotent Divine Will.
The traditional spiritual doctrines all ask, almost in unison, for the renunciation to the „I” (actually to the ego) and „mine”, which become relative and illusory in relation to the Supreme Immortal Self (ATMAN) and to the almighty divine will.
By being deeply aware of the limitations of his petty ego, the human being who is humble, sincere and aspiring to know his true nature, intuites thus exalted, the incessant mysterious presence of God in his inner universe, as well as in the smallest actions he performs and thus he will allow the Divine to manifest freely in and through his being, thus becoming a sui generis relay of manifestation of God in this world.
The profoundly purifying fire of self-sacrifice that is triggered by humility thus consumes the imperfections of the limited being, allowing the Divine Spark in man (ATMAN) to shine unhindered, propelling him at the same time from finite to infinite, from potentiality to act, from aspiration to spiritual realization. He then intuies that he is a small part of the divine macrocosmic Wholeness, and that the Whole is constantly reflected in him, and that is why he will endeavour to subdue his egotic, limited will, to the endless omnipotent Will of God the Father. In doing so, he will be astonished to know the state of absolute liberty that God enjoys in eternity.
For a human being to always go on the path of humility, one must have great inner force, an expression of experincing it on the higher levels of its being. The man who constantly walks on this path, not only does not narrow the horizon of his life, as it might seem to the superficial and ignorant, but also is situated on a plane from which the world and his life, his entire existence, acquires a completely different appearence. Humility is one of the privileged ways in which man becomes aware of his true state of being (beyond the masks and facades that “cut a fine figure”) and of the purpose of his existence. Humility thus puts man in the service of something above himself. By humility, man does not lower himself, he does not ruin himself, but he rises, transforms and builds himself. The path of humility is a simple, human way of common sense, which at the same time is innocent and free from any perversion. Through it you really understand that the ego has nothing essential to offer, and that the sincere recognition of one’s own weaknesses is indirect proof of a true profoundly transforming force.
At first glance, it may seem that humility creates a passive state that lacks motivation, but in reality humility is neither only passive, nor is it only active, and yet it acts promptly, with much more ease, because there is no one else and nothing to resist the right and divinely integrated actions.
Humbleness is and remains the appanage of the strong. Humility is a profoundly noble, dignified, elevating, ineffable, divine attitude. It means, among other things, the profound and sincere recognition of the value of the other and its acceptance, especially when it is – obviously – far superior to one’s own value, an aspect that always requires spiritual discernment.
This virtue is, at the same time, a unique moral force, on the path on which man proves to be very strong, not in this world of contingencies, of the temporal, but especially in the spiritual world.
What are the obvious qualities of humility?
Real humility must truly start from the heart, be sincere, otherwise its miming is hypocrisy and masked pride; it must also be combined with the true honor and love of God and with full faith in God, otherwise it is only a weakness; and, last but not least, it is necessary that it be manifested by deeds and be stable in all circumstances, otherwise it has no moral value.
What are the main fruits of the plenary awakening of the state of humility in our being?
The human being who awakened the state of humility and lives it fully in his inner universe, manifests a constant obedience to God and feels a spontaneous state of gratitude for everything that comes from Him. The peace of his soul remains undisturbed, for he always restrains his impetus for vain praise and veneration. Such a being easily recognizes his mistakes and repents for his sins, which he then seeks to correct as soon as possible. Humility also means overcoming, it is growth, ascension, divine inner reinforcement. It can always be counted as one of the great divine forces that man possesses for the formation of his superior personality and for the immediate gain of the Ultimate Divine Truth. Another consequence that comes from here is the gaining and experimentation of complete freedom. Man listens and then does everything only after the moral imperatives that are also divine. Nothing touches him and nothing forces him to act otherwise than to the effect of observing the Divine Will and the laws of mankind – true esteem, love, righteousness, and perfect tollerance to his neighbor being other characteristics specific to the truly humble being.
Humbleness brings forth the divine inner peace. Divine goodness and love flood the whole being of the humble one. His pure soul is then just like an open window to the divine light of the spirit. The past and the future lose their magnetic attraction for him, and his attention is drawn spontaneously, almost effortlessly, to the experience of the Present Moment, towards here and now. Such a plenary state of humility chases away everything that is false and thus reveals and gives life to the true divine powers that are triggered into the man.
People who always live in humility have a very simple appearance, and their being radiates goodness, common sense, compassion and humility. Their image is calm, their gaze is open as the day; they are completely frank, sincere, meek and direct, and when they speak, their thoughtful words spring from a somewhat sober but sound wisdom and simplicity. Such a person who is very humble meets the hardships of life without opposing stubborn resistance. He often uses his power in order to succeed in everything that does good and in a divinely integrated way. He does not act to create himself an identity through everything he does, but simply because he actually considers that it is a test he then has to face.
At the same time, the deepening of the humble state assures the man the gaining of an accumulation of great qualities, for being humble, he is also pure, lacking the craving desire to possess, willing to make benevolent sacrifices, drawn to Truth, full of abnegation and wisdom. Humility also gives the amazing ability to learn very quickly from the mistakes of others, and especially from one’s own, an availability which is so far only accessible to those who have reached a certain degree of wisdom. It is humiliation that allows the human being to look beyond the ego, thus admitting to the smallest mistakes and assuming them with great honesty and responsibility.
Humility also gives the ability to see and judge everything as objectively, divinely inspired and correctly as possible in a way that is somewhat resembling God’s point of view.
How can we awaken and dynamize this divine virtue of humility?
The most simple means we have for this are: the almost permanent prayer to get the God’s help in this respect; remembering the sacred teaching and example of the life of the great spiritual masters of the planet; and last but not least, the true and profound knowledge of oneself, for who knows himself well and properly, and knows both his good qualities and weaknesses as well as his passionate appearances, and has the will to master them, will promptly avoid evil deeds and will be able to persevere more and more in making good deeds.
The sages consider that the essential secret of humility is not to imagine how great you are, but rather how small you are, not to get involved with all that you think you deserve and that you should have, but rather be very pleased and grateful for what you already have. True humility comes from the conscious loss, strongly assumed, of the interest in all the temptations that are offered by the ego.
To aim more and more, even with fervor and perseverance, at the assimilation and amplification of the state of humility means, first of all, to constantly aspire towards devotion, endless love, wisdom, and especially to God.
What are the unfavorable inner tendencies that prevent us from being humble and modest?
The unfortunate tendency contrary to humility is pride or selfishness, that is, the eagerness to consider ourselves ceaselessly and predominantly above all others. This is where many other evil urges start, which prevent the state of humility from growing and being brought to fruition into our being. Such evils are: selfishness, uncontrolled harmful cravings, envy, etc. They immerse the human being in the selfish darkness of individualism and separation from his true Self (ATMAN), but also from the good, the wise and the righteous people. The height of mischief is, however, the unceasing justification of all the sins that have been committed, which come from the vain pride of always getting away with them and playing the innocent. The sages even say that while pride causes the death of all virtues, humility or humbleness causes the death of sins and gives life to all virtues. At the same time, it is necessary to know that knowledge without humility leads to pride and humility without wisdom can lead to some defects and even to stupidity. To be humble does not mean to immediately play down to anybody and to accept anything. Humility must never be mistaken for coward servility, for lethargic docility or blind and unconditional obedience, which is actually stupid and meaningless. It is said that in order to get up, one has to know how to bend. Docility means, indeed, to bend, but without simultaneously feeling the urge to rise above others. This comes from weakness, from incapability, from fear of being persecuted, etc. Most often, docility is unconscious behavior. The attitude of false devotion, the fact of being submissive are often mistakenly confused with authentic humility, although it is not at all the case.
For a „humble cogitation” it is necessary to always remain with the mind in the heart, say the Holy Fathers, and if the human being has somehow fallen into temptation by the pride of his mind, he can only overcome it by the virtue opposing it, which is humility. That is why humility is at the foundation of all real, divine virtues.
An important revelation (intimately correlated with the Law of Occult Resonance) upon which we often need to reflect
In reality, the states of humility that we are experiencing are always the expression of a process of occult resonance with the subtle energy of the Divine Attribute of Divine Humility, whose frequency of vibration never changes. It is essential to remember that the sublime subtle energy of the Divine Attribute of Divine Humility is endless, and when in the universe of a human being there are encountered the specific conditions for an occult resonance process to occur with this divine energy, it is received or, in other words , it is triggered in the Microcosm of the human being, and then the state of humility appears or, in other words, is experienced (directly proportional to the subtle sublime energy that triggers the state of humility and which is accumulated in the aura).
What happens then is, by analogy, something similar to receiving and catching a particular radio station as soon as our radio is previously tuned to the specific and precise vibration frequency of that broadcast station. As soon as the achord on the broadcasting frequency of the existing radio station is previously accurately achieved through our radio (which works optimally and is also connected to an appropriate source of power supplied by the electric power that provides the electricity needed), it becomes immediately possible for us to perceive, exactly on the vibration frequency of that broadcast station, the uninterrupted broadcast of that radio station, which we can hear for as many hours as we want to. This significant analogy helps us understand how the mysterious states of humility appear and are then experienced in our inner universe. These states are, as we have shown, the manifest expression of an occult resonance process with the sublime subtle energy of the Godly Attribute of Divine Humility. THE SPECIFIC FREQUENCY OF THIS SUBTLE DIVINE ENERGY CHARACTERISTIC TO THIS GODLY ATTRIBUTE NEVER CHANGES, JUST AS THE CHARACTERISTIC, DISTINCT FREQUENCY OF VIBRATION OF A CERTAIN RADIO TRANSMITTER ALWAYS STAYS THE SAME, OR IN OTHER WORDS, NEVER CHANGES. This analogical aspect helps us to intuitively grasp the mysterious occult resonance process that occurs in the universe of the human being (under certain conditions) with the sublime subtle energy of the Godly Attribute of Divine Humility, which is then received, triggered in the Microcosm of the human being, and which generates the state of humility that is experienced as such, with an intensity that is proportional to the either small, medium, or large accumulation of sublime subtle energy of this Godly Attribute.
It is essential to keep in mind that the mysterious aspects described here relating to the emergence of each state of humility as an expression of an occult resonance process with the sublime sublime energy of the Godly Attribute of Divine Humility remain valid for any other Godly Attribute, such as the Godly Attribute of Divine Love, the Godly Attribute of Divine Compassion, the Godly Attribute of God’s Benevolence, the Godly Attribute of Divine Eros, the Godly Attribute of Divine Will, the Godly Attribute of Divine Forgiveness, etc.
September 28, 2017