Humility vs. Self-Absorption

'Man in Black Leather Jacket' - photo by Mariel Reisner ( by Mariel Reiser

Thought for the Week

According to a recent study, only about 50% of men over age seventy are still sexually active. But when surveyed, nearly 100% of them say they are. Apparently, it’s not diamonds, or even sex, that are forever, but ego.

“Know thyself” is the first of three famous maxims carved in the ancient Temple of Apollo. This was to be taken in context, said the Greek philosopher Pausanius, with the other two: 1) “But nothing to excess,” for, 2) “Certainty brings insanity.”

The current age, it seems, has enshrined the first, and forgotten the latter.

Your fingers are actually quite small. But if you hold one up in front of your eyes, it appears to be taller than the tallest skyscraper. Trust me, I’m an only child–and a writer–so I know whereof I speak. But in the end, even I am capable of understanding that:

It is humility, not self-absorption, that is the key to knowing our true selves.

“You never really learn much from hearing yourself speak.”
~George Clooney

“The ego hurts you like this: you become obsessed with the one person who does not love you, and blind to the rest who do.”
~Warsan Shire

It is not the self that struggles

But the ego that struggles with the self

A battle that cannot be won

~Krista Hartley

“A proud man is always looking down on things and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down you cannot see something that is above you.”
~C.S. Lewis

“True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.”
~Rick Warren

“The Ego is a veil between humans and God. In prayer all are equal.”

“When you are Real, shabbiness doesn’t matter.”
~Margery Williams Bianco (The Velveteen Rabbit)

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Humor, Quips and Quotes and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

40 Responses to Humility vs. Self-Absorption

  1. I love the header image. It says it all about the world we live in.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Smitha V says:

    Thank you for the wonderful reminder

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ejstoo says:

    Interesting observation.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lightsonlyministries says:

    Well said.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Maryanne says:

    I love the C.S. Lewis quote. I said it myself, but differently, “People who look down on others don’t end up being looked up to.” Not sure if I can share videos, but this is from my YouTube channel:

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Linda Lee/Lady Quixote says:

    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It is hard to keep your mind humble, we are, after all, writers, and everything we write is Gold!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. robstroud says:

    That is a deeply disturbing illustration.

    And, God preserve us, an accurate one.

    The more people become consumed by the illusion of making themself feel significant, the more empty their lives.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Thanks for including that wonderful portion of The Velveteen Rabbit. It defines humility, as I understand it. The words speaks to my heart. I think the quotation provided the perfect ending to your blog.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Krista says:

    Thanks Mitch ⚘💕 Much appreciated

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Great post. As an aside, “sexually active” after age 70 can mean different things to different people!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Yernasia Quorelios says:

    💜 The More Powerful I Get, The More Humble I Become; please Let that Sink In Before Commenting



    • mitchteemley says:

      Which explains why dictators and emperors are so humble? ;>) Or are you referring to some other kind of power, Yernasia?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yernasia Quorelios says:

        💜 I AM NOT!!! Even Remotely Religious SupaSoulBro but My Marvellous Mom Was and Has Shifted to a Slightly Different Belief System and Studying a Different Version of The Bible; so what I AM Able to Share is a Universal Biblical Quote from Brother Jesu Being “The Kingdom of Heaven is WithIn” which (WITCH!!!) means To Me This…any “Power” We Perceive comes from InSide of Us; once Activated it Grows and We Have to Manage that Growth and Development while Remaining Humble…if this “Power” is MisUsed by The Likes of “Dictators” then Rebellion and Other OverThrow Happens as The Filthy Masses make Their Voice Heard in Revolting or, in Modern Parlance, ReVoting from Left to Centre to Right ad nauseum; any other questions 🤔 ?



  13. All true. Unfortunately.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Ego – Edging God Out 🎯

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Jeff says:

    Good words. But I’m pretty sure that the Rick Warren quote was Rick Warren quoting C.S. Lewis. Thanks for the reminders, though. I frequently think about how narcissistic Facebook is. Ego is fierce. I also really like that third maxim, “Certainty brings insanity.” There are way too many people out there who are “certain” of too many things.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. murisopsis says:

    All very inspiring quotes. The story of the Velveteen Rabbit was always a favorite of mine. The truth about being real – [“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit. “Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”] always struck me as the essence of the story.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Hetty Eliot says:

    The Velveteen Rabbit destroyed me as a child and I have never been the same. What I don’t get is people having a selfie as their phone’s wallpaper. Like why the heck do you wanna see your own face that often????

    Liked by 2 people

  18. gregoryjoel says:

    I love the quote from the Velveteen Rabbit. I hope I’m real because I’m pretty worn around the edges. It reminds me of something Robert Fulghum wrote in “The Bed Was On Fire When I Laid Down On It” (Paraphrase mine) – “One day you go out to the mailbox wearing old pajama bottoms, a frayed bathrobe, bunny slippers, and your hair’s a tangled mess. Some call this ‘going to seed’. Others call it the beginning of wisdom.” I’m glad that it’s a start…

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Willow Croft says:

    Random comment: I still have my childhood Velveteen Rabbit!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Anonymous says:

    The Clooney quote demonstrates the point that even a stopped clock is right twice a day. Count one for George. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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