Humility, The Greatest of All Virtues

Gregory Plathe
Comment Contributor

One may often wonder, what is the most important attribute? What is the greatest characteristic that a person can possess?

The answer may be surprising. One may wish to have strength, wisdom, influence or wealth; however, none of these is the greatest attribute. All truly great men are those who have embraced humility. While some may see it as weakness, surely, great power and strength comes from being humble.

The greatest of men are simply men. Where was man when the foundations of the universe were laid into place? Indeed, even the greatest of men are still small. The divide between the greatest and weakest of men is insignificant when we consider that all men are imperfect and flawed.

Leo Tolstoy once said “[each of us] is but a drop in that ocean of men.” We are only a small piece of a world far beyond our human understanding.

Only when we have become aware of our small stature in the universe, can we begin to live fully. Humility is based upon this profound wisdom.

Each of us will be gone; as each generation passes, another is forgotten forever. Why do we struggle daily only to brag about meaningless things? All attempts to be remembered or to achieve status or recognition are futile.

It is not irony that the greatest of men are those who knew their place in the universe. Those few great men were humbled. Humility precedes every virtue. Those people who are prideful and arrogant spend their days striving to be better than their fellow man – this is a road that leads nowhere.

Pride leads you around in circles, trying to convince you that you are something great. Arrogance achieves nothing. Humility is the only sure path to purpose and success.

Only those individuals who have been humbled can then strive to make a true impact on those around them and upon society. Those who lack humility lack true understanding; understanding is often blinded by pride and arrogance.

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