Saturday, October 9, 2010

"It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow-beings."
I have been thinking about this topic for quite some time.  I have had trouble finding just the right words.  I ran across this quote in Gandhi's autobiography, and I was amazed.  He was a peculiar man, based upon the evidence of his own autobiography.  And yet sometimes his words pierce so deeply to the heart of the matter.

Anytime one person speaks of another their listeners learn about both parties--the speaker and the person they are speaking of.

When a speaker humiliates someone we learn that the person being spoken of may be guilty of some shortcoming. We also learn that the speaker is definitely guilty of being prideful, arrogant, petty, jealous, and many other vices.

When a speaker honors someone we learn that the person being spoken of may blessed with some praise-worthy quality.  We also learn that the speaker is definitely blessed with wisdom, grace, compassion, and many other virtues.

Jesus said:
“You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
--Jesus (Mark 10:42-45)
Leaders in our era know nothing of humility.  This is an embarrassment.

* I found this quote at the end of chapter XX of his autobiography.  I looked at some prominent lists of Gandhi quotations and didn't find it anywhere.

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