She who only finds her self-esteem in others' admiration, begs an alms; Depends on others for her daily food, and is the very servant of her slaves; Tho' oftentimes, in a fantastic hour, o'er men she may a childish pow'r exert, Which not ennobles but degrades her state.
Low self-esteem is like driving through life with your hand-break on.
If we do have realistic confidence ... if we feel secure within ourselves, we tend to experience the world as open to us and to respond appropriately to challenges and opportunities. Self-esteem empowers, ennergizes, motivates. It inspires us to achieve and allows us to take pleasure and pride in our achievements.
Positive self-esteem operates as, in effect, the immune system of the consciousness, providing resistance, strength, and a capacity for regeneration. When self-esteem is low, our resilience in the face of life's adversities is diminished. We crumble before vicissitudes that a healthier sense of self could vanquish. We tend to be more influenced by the desire to avoid pain than to experience joy. Negatives have more power over us than positives.
In any culture, subculture, or family in which belief is valued above thought, and self-surrender is valued above self-expression, and conformity is valued above integrity, those who preserve their self-esteem are likely to be heroic exceptions.
I wonder how many of the people who profess to believe in the leveling ideas of collectivism and egalitarianism really just believe that they themselves are good for nothing. I mean, how many leftists are animated by a quite reasonable self-loathing? In their hearts they know that they are not going to become scholars or inventors or industrialists or even ordinary good kind people. So they need a way to achieve that smugness for which the left is so justifiably famous. They need a way to achieve self-esteem without merit. Well, there is politics. In an egalitarian world everything will be controlled by politics, and politics requires no merit.
Remain a corporation and retain control if you like, but behave as a servant leader in a partnership.
Wit will never make a man rich, but there are places where riches will always make a wit.
Nothing is more terrible than activity without insight.
Then dearest child mournest thou only for Jupiter? Considerest thou alone the burial of the stars?
People of small caliber are always carping. They are bent on showing their own superiority, their knowledge or prowess or good breeding.
Servants should not only show a servile disposition, but it is quite as imperative that they should show a trained conformity to the canons of conspicuous subservience.
Such conscription, with the state of public opinion that would have required it, and the many moral fruits it would bear, would preserve in the midst of a pacific civilization the manly virtues which the military party is so afraid of seeing disappear in peace. We should get toughness without callousness, authority with as little criminal cruelty as possible, and painful work done cheerily because the duty is temporary, and threatens not, as now, to degrade the whole remainder of one's life. I spoke of the moral equivalent of war. So far, war has been the only force that can discipline a whole community, and until and equivalent discipline is organized, I believe that war must have its way. But I have no serious doubt that the ordinary prides and shames of social man, once developed to a certain intensity, are capable of organizing such a moral equivalent as I have sketched, or some other just as effective for preserving manliness of type. It is but a question of time, of skillful propogandism, and of opinion-making men seizing historic opportunities.
Men must not content themselves with the lawfulness of their employments, but must consider whether they use them, as they are to use everything, as strangers and pilgrims that are baptized into the resurrection of Jesus Christ, that we are to follow Him in a wise and heavenly course of life, in the mortification of the worldly desires, and in purifying and preparing their souls for the blessed enjoyment of God. For to be vain, or proud, or covetous, or ambitious, in the common course of our business, is as contrary to these holy tempers of Christianity as cheating and dishonesty. If a glutton were to say, in excuse of his gluttony, that he only eats such things as it is lawful to eat, he would make as good an excuse for himself as the greedy, covetous, ambitious tradesman that would say that he only deals in lawful business. For, as a Christian is not only required to be honest, but to be of a Christian spirit, and make his life an exercise of humility, repentance, and heavenly affection, so all tempers that are contrary to these are as contrary to Christianity as cheating is contrary to honesty.
I have reached far beyond my competence and have probably secured for good a reputation for flamboyant gestures. But the times still crowd me and give me no rest, and I see no way to avoid ambitious synthetic attempts; either we get some kind of grip on the accumulation of thought or we continue to wallow helplessly, to starve amidst plenty. So I gamble with science and write.