Humility Beyond Self

Humility is not the abdication of self, but rather the transcendence of self.

Humility is being true to who we are and manifesting that truth in a way that fits into the situation or circumstance within which we find ourselves.

Humility is not being so full of ourselves that we take up all of the air in the room, leaving no space for others to be who they are. Neither is it thinking so little of ourselves that we shrink away from being present and taking a stand for what we believe in.

Humility is being right-sized inside and out. It is fitting in, but not backing down. It is having a voice, but not making noise. It is never doing that which is unnecessary, never creating dissonance, and never causing discomfort.

Humility is true courtesy, true etiquette, and true graciousness because it is both genuine and appropriate to the relationship at hand.


Holistic Budo: As it is in budo, so too it is in life. As it is in life, so too it is in budo.

Robert Van Valkenburgh is co-founder of Taikyoku Mind & Body and Kogen Dojo where he teaches Taikyoku Budo and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Artwork by Ana, except where otherwise noted

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