Humility vs. Arrogance - a lesson in real time
Those of you who watch this space are aware that I published the book: BLESSED ARE THE MEEK in 2020 (available at amazon.com!). The book was inspired by the dual tragedies of the Covid 19 pandemic and the tumultuous American presidential election. My premise: Arrogance, a predominating value in much of contemporary society, fosters separation, disconnection, fear and hatred, while it’s opposite, Humility (meekness) engenders connection, attachment, love and empathy. While I did not plan on addressing these concepts again so soon, I felt compelled to do so by recent world events.
As Ukraine fights to hold off the Russian invasion and its resulting torture, death and inhumanity, it has become clear that Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky clearly represent the polar opposites of the Blessed are the Meek paradigm. While Putin embodies arrogance, characterizing Ukraine as an enemy that must be feared and crushed, separating himself even from his own countrymen out of a sense of superiority and irrational paranoia, Zelensky is completely connected to his fellow Ukrainians, unafraid to walk the streets of bombed out cities and collapsing buildings with them, out of love for and connection to his fellow citizens.
As a result of his arrogance, Putin has found himself isolated from the rest of the world, commanding invading armies with shrinking supplies and diminishing morale. The humility and empathy that Zelensky demonstrates connects him not only to the world, doing as much as possible to aid Ukraine, but more importantly to fellow Ukrainians, who are willing to fight to the death to defend their country.
Why write about this topic in a wellness column? The lesson is clear: Humility is clearly the healthiest path forward, for peace, for health, for hope and for love. Repudiating arrogance in our own lives, and by extension, in the world, is our only hope for a joyful life.
Dr. John Monaco