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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Loosen expectations!

HUMILITY - The quality or condition of being humble; imitate Jesus and Socrates. [Humility week begins here. Click for this week's Bliss Initiatives.]

I did not realize how prophetic the "Loosen expectations" Bliss Inititaive would be! My internet connection here at the hotel has been very hit or miss so I have found it quite difficult to do the type of research I usually do when preparing my posts. I have had to walk around the hotel looking for a signal when I want to load a page and I have been leaning over my balcony in bizare contortions when I was "so close" to getting what I wanted, but I wasn't prepared for losing an entire post!

I have been considering Ben Franklin's "imitate Jesus and Socrates" and realized that in order to to really get at the heart of the matter I would need some considerable study of both Jesus and Socrates. The post I lost was a begining to that inquiry and since beaches and a two year old are calling, I will not have the time to recreate what I had written I have decided to leave you with the conclusions of a blogger named Ron who blogs over at Window or Mirror. His point of view is very different from mine but even so I have found his post about Ben Franklin's Humility spot on! Here is an excerpt. Follow the link I provided for the excellent complete post.

Franklin’s advice is simple and direct – imitate two people who were known to have the virtue of humility. The quotes suggest some of the qualities of humility; respect for your position in the Universe, self-effacing humor, treating yourself as you’d have others treat you, and so forth. In order to get Franklin’s point, we’ll have to take a look at the lives of both Socrates and Christ.

He (Socrates) declared that he knew nothing, except the fact of his ignorance (Diogenes Laƫrtius). In the writings of Plato, we see that his teacher, Socrates, was indeed aware that he was a very small cog in a vast machine. Executed for suggesting that the world was larger than it was seen at that time, Socrates lived a life of humility. Socrates knew that he could live a good life, and study always, and that in the Universe these accomplishments would still mean almost nothing. He knew his limits and influenced others through quiet reflections on reality more than have the most voluble orators.

Christ, believed to be the Son of God by Christians, lived a life that defined the term humility. Leaving heaven as the Creator, He arrived in Bethlehem in a feed trough for domesticated animals. Regardless your belief in the supernatural events in Christ’s life, there can be gained a good picture of humility. Born to a young mother and a carpenter father, He worked hard and learned much. His life and composed attitude, even in death, set the Perfect standard for each of us. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Phil 2:3-5 NIV).

Thank you for your concise take on Socrates and Jesus' humilty Ron! I will revisit my own thoughts in a later post, most likely when I revisit this topic again in 13 weeks.

Next Post: Humble update

My 13 bliss virtues: joy, order, creativity, passion, whimsy, serenity, inquiry, community, romance, gratitude, moxie, humility, surprise
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© Kathy Sprinkle and Everyday Kathy, 2009-2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Everyday Kathy with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Ben Franklin's 13 Virtues

  • 1. TEMPERANCE - Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.
  • 2. SILENCE - Speak not what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
  • 3. ORDER - Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
  • 4. RESOLUTION - Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.
  • 5. FRUGALITY - Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e. waste nothing.
  • 6. INDUSTRY - Lose no time; be always employ'd in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.
  • 7. SINCERITY - Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and if you speak, speak accordingly.
  • 8. JUSTICE - Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.
  • 9. MODERATION - Avoid extreams; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.
  • 10. CLEANLINESS - Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths or habitation.
  • 11. TRANQUILITY - Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.
  • 12. CHASTITY - Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or to the injury of your own or another's peace or reputation.
  • 13. HUMILITY - Imitate Jesus and Socrates.


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