Let My People Know

"An ability to accept the facts about oneself"


Humility does not lie in the denial of one's superiority, virtue, or wisdom. 

It rests, rather, on the absence of a personal sensitivity to what is said about oneself. 

It is thus an ability to accept the facts about oneself, without emotional identification of any kind, whether positive or negative. 

So that one will not necessarily say, "Oh no, no. Not me," in response to approbation and acclaim. 

Because it does not matter if one is called good or great, sagacious or beautiful, or whatever; it simply makes no difference. 

Moses, for instance, was able to hear terrible accusations against him without saying anything. 

On the other hand, he could command the earth to swallow Korah when he felt the ignominy of the lie to be such as to warrant such an action. 

In other words, although he was not identified with his image, he was not unresponsive.

He was able to act when non-action would have been weakness; that is, he was well aware of his own power and greatness. 

The one who knows his worth does not have to bend or defend himself. 

He is correctly balanced in his own place, in his own position.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From The Candle of God by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz