Pride, Best Taken In Small Doses….

May 8, 2014

2014-04-30_10-44-20Most of you have probably heard of the “Seven Deadly Sins”.

  • Lust
  • Gluttony
  • Greed
  • Sloth
  • Wrath
  • Envy
  • Pride

Here is a little about their origins from Wikipedia:

The seven deadly sins, also known as the capital vices or cardinal sins, is a classification of vices (part of Christian ethics) that has been used since early Christian times to educate and instruct Christians concerning fallen humanity’s tendency to sin. In the currently recognized version, the sins are usually given as wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony. Each are a form of Idolatry-of-Self wherein the subjective reigns over the objective.

In almost every list, pride (Latin, superbia), or hubris (Greek), is considered the original and most serious of the seven deadly sins, and the source of the others. It is identified as believing that one is essentially better than others, failing to acknowledge the accomplishments of others, and excessive admiration of the personal self (especially holding self out of proper position toward God). Dante’s definition was “love of self perverted to hatred and contempt for one’s neighbour”.

So, throughout Christian history pride has been considered the root of all other sins.  Jesus talked about pride more than a few places in the red letters. Several parables were about excessive pride.  Pride when taken in liberal doses is just a bad thing. But is it sinful to be proud of yourself?

In my mind there is nothing wrong with being proud of your accomplishments in life. I take pride in the fact that I am passionate about being my brother’s keeper. I take pride in the fact that I have been a faithful husband. I take pride in the fact that I was the first one in the family to graduate college. There is nothing wrong with pride in small doses.  I take pride in the fact that I am able to express my thoughts in the written word.

But when pride overwhelms us it becomes the root of all evil. When we think that we are better than anyone else it taints our very being.  When we take pride in the fact they our version of spirituality is the only true path to God it is deadly indeed. But the most serious type of pride is love of self, This type of pride almost always results in contempt of one’s neighbors and that it is the root of all evil. Of course extreme love of self is called narcissism. Here is a little about that from my usual friends at Wiki:

Narcissism is the pursuit of gratification from vanity, or egotistic admiration of one’s own physical or mental attributes, that derive from arrogant pride. The term originated with Narcissus in Greek mythology who fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water.

Lets all just get over ourselves… 🙂