St. Theophan the recluse: Humility

On humility by St Theophan the Recluse

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There is no need for me to repeat to you that the invincible weapon against all our enemies Is humility. It Is not easily acquired. We can think ourselves humble without having a trace of true humility. And we cannot make ourselves humble merely by thinking about It. The best, or rather, the only sure way to humility is by obedience and the surrender of our own will. Without this it is possible to develop a satanic pride In ourselves while being humble In words and In bodily postures. I beg you to pay attention to this point and, In all fear, examine the order of your life.

Does it include obedience and surrender of your will? Out of all the things you do, how many are done contrary to your own will, your own ideas and reflections? Do you do anything unwillingly, simply because you are ordered, through sheer obedience? Please examine it all thoroughly and tell me. If there Is nothing of this type of obedience, the kind of life you lead will not bring you to humility. No matter how much you may humble yourself in thought, without deeds leading to self-abasement, humility will not come. So you must think carefully how to arrange for this.


Me: I don’t think a woman can be humble and a feminist. They seem counter intuitive.