Infinite humility

Dr Prabhu Dev
4 min readMay 19, 2023

Namaste

Humility is perfect quietness at heart!

Placing both hands together in the region of the heart at the level of forehead between the eyes and a gentle bow and a verbal pronunciation — Namaste! I bow to the divinity within you. The Right response to Namaste is returning the Namaste in the same attitude! The joining together of the palms is said to provide a connection between the right and left hemispheres of the brain and represents unification.

Namaste is performed as humble surrender to the Almighty! The joining of both hands together represents unity and integrity and that we all are one — “The Divine is the same in you and me. It is also used as an expression of gratitude and thankfulness.

You have a choice — stay humble or someday you get humbled! Cultivate Humility! In life Respect is earned. Honesty is appreciated. Trust is gained. Loyalty is returned. Humility is a core value of all religions! Have no pretensions, be upright. Keep the mind and body clean, tranquil and steadfast, and master your ego.

Chaos is the law of nature. Order is the dream of man. Humility isn’t what most people think it is. Life is a beautiful mess of organised chaos. It’s a cruel and random world, but the chaos is all so beautiful. What we call chaos are just patterns we haven’t recognized. What we call random is just what we can’t decipher. All powerful emotions come from chaos! Humility is respect towards others. No pride is as dangerous as the pride of holiness and superiority!

Time passes, Memories fade, Feelings change and People leave. What remains is the loneliness. So stay humble! Humility is harmony over opposition, unity over division, “we” over “I.” We often confuse humility with timidity. Humility is not clothing ourselves in an attitude of self-debasement or self-denigration.

Humility is to be Tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with those striving hard and tolerant of the weak. The injunction to be humble does not sound very attractive. It seems to be in conflict with our self-esteem and self-worth. Humility is never to be meek or weak!

Words have enormous power. Words have a real impact on thought and attitude. Some words have different effects on different people. One such word is humility. Humility is seldom in neutral gear. Some, like me, love the word and all it stands for. Some almost fear it and interpret it as lack of self-confidence or timidity. Humility is modesty, lacking pretence, not believing that you are superior to others. Humility is a meta-virtue.

Humility is all about maintaining our pride about who we are, about our achievements, about our worth — but without arrogance — it is the antithesis of arrogance. Humility is like a river, the deeper it is, quieter it flows and less noise it makes. Humility does not mean false modesty. Humility does not mean taking a back seat. As Frankness is not a license to say anything you want Humility is not a submissive or doormat mentality.

Humility is mother of all virtues! The Power of wanting to know What You Don’t Know, is an intellectual form of humility. False humility is what slaves show to their masters. True humility is something totally different; Humility is easy to talk about, but difficult to cultivate.

We have forgotten how to politely disagree. When you disagree it can often be a challenge to express your point of view without offending that person. At the same time, it’s important to express your honest opinion. Listen before you disagree- “I’m sorry but I disagree with you about this. Be firm and polite! End with Agree to disagree and don’t prolong! Make Them Feel Seen and Heard!

It’s a natural human reaction to shy away from disagreeing with a superior. Many tend to overplay the risks involved in speaking up. Discussing the issue in private will make the powerful person feel less threatened. Ask permission to disagree with valid viewpoints! Stay calm and be humble!

Humility has long been extolled as an ancient virtue and humility has the transformative power to change people’s lives, relationships, work, and society itself. Empathy is the key to humility, and it’s comprised of two parts: the ability to take someone else’s perspective and a genuine concern for the well-being of another person. Building empathy helps us cultivate humility.

It’s time for a change… and change has to start with us. Have a modest perception of yourself! Open your eyes and hearts to developing empathy towards neighbours. Humility is not about thinking less of yourself, but of yourself less. Believe all of us are equal! No one is more equal! Let others speak. Learn to listen actively! Do not pry and gossip! Laugh and laugh at yourself — the world laughs with you! A person who makes fun of others is called tormentor.

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Dr Prabhu Dev

Former director of Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiology, Former VC of Bangalore University and former chairman of the Karnataka State Health Commission