thoughts on humility

I read these thoughts today & was challenged. As much as we think we are humble, the flesh has a way of rising up in us. Here is what C.S. Lewis thought of his humility…

2009-07 c.s.lewis

“As a new Christian in 1930, C. S. Lewis was learning terrible things about his heart—the unfathomable layers of pride. It is astonishing how similar his description of his own heart was to the description Jonathan Edwards gave of our inscrutable strata of self-admiration.

Here is Lewis writing to his friend Arthur, amazingly within a year after his conversion:

During my afternoon “meditations,”—which I at least attempt quite regularly now—I have found out ludicrous and terrible things about my own character. Sitting by, watching the rising thoughts to break their necks as they pop up, one learns to know the sort of thoughts that do come.

And, will you believe it, one out of every three is the thought of self-admiration: when everything else fails, having had its neck broken, up comes the thought “what an admirable fellow I am to have broken their necks!” I catch myself posturing before the mirror, so to speak, all day long. I pretend I am carefully thinking out what to say to the next pupil (for his good, of course) and then suddenly realize I am really thinking how frightfully clever I’m going to be and how he will admire me…

And then when you force yourself to stop it, you admire yourself for doing that. It is like fighting the hydra… There seems to be no end to it. Depth under depths of self-love and self-admiration. (quoted in The Narnian by Alan Jacobs, 133)

HT: JT

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