Ego, pride and arrogance. At a single glance they all seem to be the same, or at least that’s the common claim. Haha! wait a minute that actually rhymes, but anyways I can’t tell you enough how many times I’ve made decisions in my life solely based on either one of those three. But who hasn’t really. I mean so many facets of our lives are based on how we view ourselves, how we view others and how we view ourselves in comparison to others. Ultimately however each one of those three harbors a bit of good but also a world of bad. I’ll explain.
So let’s talk about ego first and how it is really just about the self. Self worth for that matter. You see ego is indicative of how you view yourself or simply your estimation of your own self. And that’s why in many ways ego can serve as just the kick of confidence you need to go out and reach for something or unfortunately the very reason you end up making a fool of yourself; because paint yourself too small and you may never reach your full potential or paint yourself too big and you might just live to regret the day you ever got into painting. Haha!
Next up, pride. Pride is a little tricky actually because in so many ways it is actually warranted, because pride is in fact you being proud about something. Like for example an achievement, so you have achieved something and now you have pride towards that thing. Fair enough I guess, but the issue with pride is that it should be short lived but usually that’s not the case. So with pride the taste of success should induce your hunger for more success and not satiate your hunger for success. It’s also equally important to have pride with regards to the right things because very easily you could fall prey to arrogance.
And last up, arrogance. It is said that the first sin which God was faced with in heaven was one that emanated from arrogance, as the story in the Quran narrates when Satan refused to bow down to Adam because he felt he was superior to him as he (Satan) was made of fire and Adam was made of clay. Whether or not you believe in the story is a different debate altogether but the reality of arrogance is that it is derived from you seeing and believing yourself to be better than someone else, warranted or not warranted. So its relative and I guess that’s why nobody likes an arrogant person, because through their arrogance they often attempt to put someone or something else down.
And there are numerous things that people are arrogant about, none more ridiculous than arrogance with regards to beauty. As mentioned in a book that I probably quote everywhere in my blog:
“That is, how can one have an obnoxious sense of superiority for something one had nothing to do with? First of all, God is the Fashioner; it is He who gives all things their shapes and forms. Secondly, beauty does not last; it wanes, as the pressures of age and stress wear down flesh, so what remains is what one should have focused on in the first place: the content of one’s character, personal beliefs, and one’s deeds.”
Couldn’t have put it better myself.
But there are times when arrogance is good, surprisingly, and that’s in the face of an arrogant person. Ironic right Haha!
Finally it all goes back to that point which I keep bringing up every time and that’s moderation. Either one of those three can, in the right amounts, serve to be a source of great good but a little too much of either and the entire thing is just perverse. However, the safest position I feel is modesty and humbleness. More often than not its the harder option but equally its often the correct option.
Be humble. Be modest 🙂