Humility is a quiet sort of confidence, an inner strength that allows for vulnerability because its possessor cares more about what is true than who is right. Humble people are teachable because, unlike the proud, they are open to criticism and correction without being emotionally battered and bruised by what is said or even how it’s said. True humility not only requires emotional strength and confidence, but an inner maturity and emotional independence of others’ opinions.
This is something I struggle with. And I mean I do struggle with it, not that I'm bad at it, and it bothers me. I mean, I recognize in the past how brittle I was about being wrong, and how frustrating that was for the people in my life, and have worked hard to overcome that fault.
I no longer believe that I am certain about anything. I have some strong suspicions about some things, but certainty is something I've learned at cost is not to be trusted. What has felt incredibly, undoubtedly true in the past has turned out to be wrong - and what seemed impossible came to pass. But what never really clicked that certainty is a kind of insecurity. It is valuing one's own perception and intelligence over that of the world; and failing to acknowledge that there is always a chance - always - that one can be wrong.
And I also struggle with it because I am trying to deal with people in a couple of different areas of my life who are profoundly proud, who do not easily compromise and frequently quarrel with a kind of moral certainty that is frustrating to deal with.
There exists a fine line between a compromise born of humility, and just refusing to engage with someone who is quarrelsome and surrendering out of fatigue. I am still working on how to talk that line, and in the mean time, it's wearying and I'm losing enthusiasm for some pursuits that have been dear to me in the past.