Tips from the Monastery: Healthy Self-Deprecation

lessons from a monastery

Christ is risen!

According to Wikipedia self-deprecation is the “act of belittling or undervaluing oneself”. But according to the behaviour of monastics (those who shine brightly as examples for us struggling in the world), self-deprecation is the act of knowing one’s self and revealing that knowledge in word and action.

Such statements are perhaps disconcerting when we first hear them. The first few times I heard a monastic say “I had the thought – with my stupid mind – that [insert opinion here]” it threw me off guard. And being the over-analytical person I am an inner dialogue began:

Does speaking like this draw unnecessary attention to one’s self ? Or is it prudent and constructive to speak openly and inexcusably about our weaknesses, our fallibility?

St. Ignaty Brianchaninov says: “Everyone who wants to dispassionately and seriously investigate the state of his soul will see the illness of insensibility in…

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About Joel

Joel is a 32 year old currently residing in the southeastern United States. His interests lay in philosophy and theology. He is a writer for The Christian Watershed.

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