Monday, July 2, 2012

Humility. Hmmm.

Having grown up in a society where humility is the foremost virtue, I often find myself wondering what it means when you switch the surroundings and context. (A humble, grounded individual would still be hailed sky high where I come from.)

Does humility lose or gain value with changing cultures? Does it bring more or less face value to a personality based upon where you are?

Let us take an example. You are on a domestic flight. A middle aged non-English speaking lady, unable to find storage bin for her carry on bag, re adjusts bags of those already seated, makes enough space, and puts her bag in there.

One of the gents (whose bag got re-oriented as a result) starts off in a heavily aggressive tone, threatening to throw the lady's bag off the plane, who looked like had no clue why he was screaming.

Being in the case seat, and having heard the constant threats many times, I stood up, made sure all the bags would fit and that the bin closes (by squeezing my backpack in a bit farther), and sat back down. Almost instantly, I faced adjectives that would suggest a weakness of character and timidity and the unwillingness to fight.

Was it really necessary to fight to resolve this situation? The lady in question, was aghast - unable to perceive what just happened. Would it always take a masculine push to stay on life's path? What of the Gandhis? The Mandelas? Are they fit only for the shields and awards?

Why does an everyday hero have to be a Clinton, or a Bush, or a Churchill??

If you know the answer, please share in a comment.

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