Sunday, 11 March 2012

St. Bernard of Clairvaux - Steps of Pride & Steps of Humility

Since pride is the opposite of humility, the steps toward full pride are the opposite of the steps toward full humility. The steps to humility are the antidote to the steps to pride. One step leads to the next.

12 Steps of Pride

1. Curiosity about what is not one's proper concern
2. Light mindedness: chatter and exclamation about things which do not matter
3. Laughing about nothing; foolish merriment
4. Boasting and talking too much
5. Trying to be different: claiming special rights
6. Thinking oneself holier than others
7. Interfering presumptuously with the affairs of others
8. Self-justification: defending one's sinful actions
9. Insincere confession
10. Rebelling against superiors
11. Feeling free to sin
12. Habitual sinning

12 Steps of Humility

12. Containment of one's interests, which shows itself in a humble bearing and lowered eyes
11. Quiet and restrained speech
10. Reluctance to laugh
9. Keeping silent unless asked to speak
8. Regarding oneself as having no special rights in the community
7. Thinking oneself less holy than the others
6. Thinking oneself unworthy to take initiative
5. Confessing one's sins
4. Patience in the face of accusation
3. Submission to superiors
2. Desiring no freedom to exercise one's will
1. Constant watchfulness against sin

From: Bernard of Clairvaux - Selected Works, Gillian R. Evans, 1987.