Importance of Humility
often embrace chivalry because they want to apply to themselves
the heroic image of championing all that is good, and fighting all
that is evil. In other words, they want to be a hero in the romantic
sense, and often see themselves as that alreadyat least in
What they don't
realize is that real Knighthood does not just fall from the skies
at their invitation. They are somewhat stunned to learn that the
first enemy they have to face is often themselves. They may
fail along the way because ego tends to block the path to true heroism,
tainting every thought and deed with selfishness unbecoming of a
Knight, who is charged to put the well-being of others ahead of
Your behavior might have to improve to actually reflect
chivalric ideals. Certain prejudices have to go as a sign of maturity
and refinement. (There's no such thing as chivalric bigotry.) Courtesy
is important, but not well taught in today's society. You may have
to learn how be courteous on your own, and that takes time and effort.
(Acting polite now and then around strangers is not enough.) A certain
amount of toleration is important. You live in a world where chivalry
is almost unknown. You can't expect people to live up to your standardswhich
you need to show rather than teach to truly make a difference. If
you wish to be a Knight, you must have the integrity to think for
yourself, and not just repeat what you hear. Your values must be
real, and not fashioned by today's out-of-control ideologies.
takes self-discipline. It starts where you are, and with
the commitment you make. It means replacing your readymade ego with
humility, which is nothing more than the quiet, some might say taming,
acceptance of who you really are. Without humility, the ideals of
chivalry are forever beyond your reach.
To help in that
regard, the following "key elements of humility" were
taken from the book Martial Virtues, by Charles
assessment of one's ability and achievements (not
low self-esteem, self-depreciation).
- Ability to
acknowledge one's mistakes, imperfections, gaps
in knowledge, and limitations (often vis-à-vis a "higher
to new ideas,
contradictory information, and advice.
of one's abilities and accomplishmentsone's place in the
worldin perspective (e.g., seeing oneself as just
one person in the larger scheme of things).
a "forgetting of self," while recognizing that one is
but one part of the larger universe.
of the value of all things,
as well as the many different ways that people and things can
contribute to our world.