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How Can We Obtain Humility?

How Can We Obtain Humility? - St Shenouda Monastery Pimonakhos Articles

There are people who are humble by nature and there are those who obtained humility through spiritual struggle and much spiritual training. We do not deny that it is a difficult road but it is the same narrow road leading to the City of Joy. It is a long road and needs continuous training, subduing one’s will and wishes. St John Climacus says: “In the beginning, we hate praise reluctantly then as humility increases through different virtues, a person reaches a stage where he considers himself unworthy. Similar to a plant that continues to grow as long as it is watered.”

We will discuss some issues that will help us obtain this virtue:


There are many verses from the Bible which tells us to imitate Christ’s humility. The Apostle says: “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith” (Heb 12:2), and “Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ” (1 Cor 11:1). The first of these blessings is meekness and humility as the Lord invited us, “Learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart” (Matt 11:29).

St John Climacus says: “The Lord said learn from me for I am gentle and lowly in heart. Not to learn from an angel, another person, or a book, but from Me.”

St Ephram the Syrian says: “What can we say to God? What did we ever need and He did not supply? Haven’t we seen God humble Himself as a slave so that we too become humble? Haven’t we seen His Holy Face spitted on so that if someone scolded us we don’t reply? Haven’t we seen His back bend from beatings so that we submit to our superiors? And His face slapped so we do not respond when rejected. We did not hear him arguing so that we do not stick to our opinion and do not answer back? We heard Him saying I do nothing from My own, so that we do not become important in our own eyes. We even heard Him say, ‘Learn from me for I am gentle and lowly in heart.’

(From: Christian Living Series – SPIRITUAL CONCEPTS Vol 2)