Accepted AnswerYears ago I when I first started talking about humility in workshops I looked up the definition. There are many of course but one of them stated that humility is a sense of modesty about one's own importance. I have reflected on that many times and at first it seemed so "basic" but as I reflected on it in context of various challenges in my life, racial and otherwise I realize how profound the implications are. I also love both the aikido image and well as the concept of humility giving direction to power.
Accepted AnswerFrom my limited knowledge and experience in race relations, there are always baggage which we bring into the situation, some of it we may be aware of and probably some that we are not. As in any relationship where there is tension, to find a solution to satisify all, requires everyone to "let" go of their baggage. This process of letting go can be called "detachment". To me a foundation block in the fortress of humility is detachment. Being detached allows us to see other perspectives and accept new ways of thinking about people, situations, events, etc. I think it is best said by Bahá'u'lláh in His Hidden Words: "Humility exalteth man to the heaven of glory and power, whilst pride abaseth him to the depths of wretchedness and degradation."
In context of race relations, pride of one's race grows from beliefs of comfort of the known, familarity with others of similar/shared backgrounds, ignorance of other races, selfish desires to be "one up" on others and vain imagings to be thought of as "better than they are". Pride brings about contention and blocks efforts for finding just solutions.
Humility brings a fresh acceptance of situations and those envolved. It breaths a tranquial attitude of cooperation, it fosters encouragement to find the right solution for all. Humility invites everyone to seek out ways in which they can change for the better of all. It helps to lower stress, increases patience, increase tolerance, gives direction to power, "greases the skids" for better communications, and helps to gain a fuller understanding of the broader context within which we find ourselves.
Accepted AnswerAmen from someone who practices in several faith traditions. This view is found over and over from the lips of spiritual people because it WORKS. Humility keeps us from many racially charged situations, and defuses those in which we find ourselves. It is the surprise move of King or Gandhi, the Tao at work, an aikido move that uses the other person's energy not to let them fall but to lift them up.
Accepted AnswerI have often thought that humility in a racially charged situation could manifest itself through the art of listening. I have found through numerous consultations and discussions on race relations that many people, if not the majority, are too busy thinking about what they want to say next while the other person is speaking. This was a profound awareness for me as an American Indian since listening is a the core of our tribal traditions, thus it was hard for me to be aware that not everyone was listening. Once I became aware of this, I learned to repeat my statements with compassion and found that, not always, but sometimes someone would finally hear what I had to say.
I have also discovered that many people automatically see situations as right or wrong without allowing for a combination of both or at least the possibility thereof. Humility, in my opinion, always allows for other world views and seldom sees things as ultimately right or wrong. In my personal path toward humility I try to see things as our common humanity without heros and villains, good or bad. I see us as simply human in a variety of situations and conditions which we might want to change, especially with race relations.