Some Reflections on Pride

By Romegas

Modern society is increasingly incapable of distinguishing the nuances between words, not least because of its growing illiteracy. One common mistake is to confound satisfaction or fulfillment with pride. Satisfaction or fulfillment is the result of being internally spiritually gratified as a result of doing something that satisfies the soul. Satisfaction and fulfillment both require a feedback mechanism. Pride on the other hand is an inordinate sense of self-esteem; an unreasonable conceit of one’s own superiority in talents, beauty, wealth, or rank, which manifests itself in lofty airs, distance, reserve, and often contempt of others.

Satisfaction and fulfillment come from being of service to something or someone while pride is fed by narcissism. Satisfaction and fulfillment come from serving  – pride is simply about edifying the ego.

We now use the word pride loosely daily when we say things such as I am proud of my work – when I really mean I am satisfied or fulfilled by it. Every society in history except ours encouraged satisfaction and fulfillment but abhorred pride.

Here are some reflections about pride:

“Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18

“The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.” Proverbs 16:5

“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2

In his pride the wicked man does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God. – Psalms 10:4

To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behaviour and perverse speech.” Proverbs 8:13 

“Before his downfall a man’s heart is proud, but humility comes before honour.” Proverbs 18:12

“A man’s pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honour.” Proverbs 29:23

“The LORD Almighty planned it, to bring low the pride of all glory and to humble all who are renowned on the earth.” Isaiah 23:9

The LORD Almighty has a day in store for all the proud and lofty, for all that is exalted (and they will be humbled) – Isaiah 2:12

But when his heart became arrogant and hardened with pride, he was deposed from his royal throne and stripped of his glory. – Daniel 5:20

Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips. – Proverbs 27:2

The proud and arrogant person—“Mocker” is his name— behaves with insolent fury. – Proverbs 21:24

Holy humility confounds pride and all the men of this world and all things that are in the world. – Francis of Assisi

Through pride we are ever deceiving ourselves. But deep down below the surface of the average conscience a still, small voice says to us, something is out of tune. Carl Gustav Jung

The truest characters of ignorance are vanity and pride and arrogance – Samuel Butler

In general, pride is at the bottom of all great mistakes. – John Ruskin

Pride is an admission of weakness; it secretly fears all competition and dreads all rivals. – Fulton J. Sheen

It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels. – Saint Augustine

Pride makes us artificial and humility makes us real. – Thomas Merton

Pride, envy, avarice – these are the sparks that have set on fire the hearts of all men. – Dante Alighieri

The greatest pride, or the greatest despondency, is the greatest ignorance of one’s self. – Baruch Spinoza

Pride and excess bring disaster for man. – Xun Kuang

Is pride, the never-failing vice of fools. – Alexander Pope

That which is given with pride and ostentation is rather an ambition than a bounty. – Lucius Annaeus Seneca

If I had only one sermon to preach it would be a sermon against pride. – Gilbert K. Chesterton

Pride will spit in pride’s face. – Thomas Fuller

Selfishness is one of the more common faces of pride. ‘How everything affects me’ is the center of all that matters – self-conceit, self-pity, worldly self-fulfillment, self-gratification, and self-seeking. – Ezra Taft Benson

In reality, there is, perhaps, no one of our natural passions so hard to subdue as pride. – Benjamin Franklin

Pride and vanity, the opposites of humility, can destroy our spiritual health as surely as a debilitating disease can destroy our physical health. – Joseph B. Wirthlin

Pride deafens us to the advice or warnings of those around us. – John C. Maxwell

Pride defeats its own end, by bringing the man who seeks esteem and reverence into contempt. – Henry IV of England

Pride the first peer and president of hell. – Daniel Defoe

A portion of mankind take pride in their vices and pursue their purpose; many more waver between doing what is right and complying with what is wrong.  – Horace

Pride is pleasure arising from a man’s thinking too highly of himself.  – Baruch Spinoza

In the fallen there is danger of pride and vainglory, since they prefer their own judgment to the judgment of everyone else, usurping what is not their own by setting themselves up as judges in their own cause when the rightful judge is their superior. – Saint Ignatius

Pride does not wish to owe and vanity does not wish to pay. – Francois de La Rochefoucauld

In wickedness of pride is lost the light to understand how little grace is earned and how much given. – Robert Hunter

Was it not through pride that the devil became the devil? Christ wanted to serve. The devil wanted to rule. – Ezra Taft Benson

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