June 1, 2016 – From Sr. Barbara Wincik
It is almost impossible to overestimate the value of true humility and its power in the spiritual life. For the beginning of humility is the beginning of blessedness and the consummation of humility is the perfection of all joy …. In perfect humility all selfishness disappears. -Thomas Merton Selfishness; just what is selfishness? Webster’s Dictionary has several definitions; 1: Concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself: seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure or well-being without regard for others 2: arising from concern with one’s own welfare or advantage in disregard of others. The third definition is my favorite; being an actively replicating repetitive sequence of nucleic acid that serves no function. So in essence I suppose selfishness is a disregard for another because of my perceived needs. To put another spin on the concept; unless I do my own inner work I may be blinded to my own actions of selfishness. Without looking at the motives for my actions, I can become absorbed completely in my own world. Living humility challenges me to look at the truth of who I am called to be in this life and to develop an awareness of the purpose my actions and reactions. This is no easy task because I am part of the human condition complete with blessings and warts. The journey keeps me grounded and real.