The Relentless Pursuit of Honor

Without the need for honor, a person would live quietly in a corner. So, there is a kind of inner fire that constantly fuels us and compels us to succeed in the eyes of others. They should appreciate us, respect us, talk about us.

In a nutshell, those who want to be respected are recommended to learn and also teach others how to connect properly, how to rise together to the most dignified degree of existence there is.

Honor is a condition that cannot be inherited, we have to work for it. Everything depends on the values that are accepted in society. It can be a society that values money and status symbols, or one that values simplicity and a modest life. A criminal society that values power and violence, or a society of artists that values sensitivity and creativity. In either case, depending on our innate characteristics, the education we received, and the society that surrounds us, each person wants to gain the attention, appreciation, and respect of those around him or her. Without it, one does not feel whole.

At any given moment, society provides us with a model against which we are measured. It makes us work, make an effort to become more and more like this model of success. Some people are willing to invest a lot to be remembered well after they die, because the feeling of dignity has no limits, neither in time, nor in place, nor in intensity.

Honor, is it good or bad? It depends on how the tendency is used. To illustrate, if I want to spur a child to invest in his studies and tell him, ‘You are better, you will be great, everyone will respect you,’ I am giving him motivation to study, which is good. On the other hand, if I keep lowering his dignity, I destroy his self-confidence and nothing comes of it.

With regard to ourselves, we must examine the direction in which respect drives us. If the desire to be above everything drives a person to act at the expense of others, to kick them on the way to the summit, to control and maneuver them, then that is destructive honor. Constructive honor, on the other hand, is that I want to be respected precisely by helping everyone, sacrificing myself for them, caring about their welfare and well-being. If society honors me for such an attitude on my part as a good and generous person, that is constructive honor. It will also be accompanied by constructive competition: which of us invests more for the benefit of society.

Because of human beings selfish nature, there is a tendency to belittle others instead of respecting them. A selfish society puts everyone under constant pressure: Is my dignity being violated? Are you giving me the respect I deserve? Is there someone more respectable than me? Overall, this pressure puts us in a cutthroat competition that destroys our relationships, our health, and our lives.

Social and personal development improves when we learn to use the wisdom of connection. On the whole, this method changes our egoistic nature to a nature of bestowal. With its help we come to a situation where we connect as one man with one heart.

Gradually you begin to feel a special power of bestowal, love and giving. A connecting and unifying force. It becomes the source of a special inspiration of mutual respect. It is a sublime, spiritual, wonderful feeling. Everyone feels whole, especially in connection with others. It is an honor for the person to be in such a relationship with everyone.

Mutual respect means that I respect the other and he or she respects me, because only together can we build a system of communication in which the same supreme power is revealed. I do not underestimate anyone because I feel dependent on others for the sake of my personal development. To be more precise, we can say that we do not respect each other, but the state of common connectedness that has been built. And that is a very special honor.

In a nutshell, those who want to be respected are recommended to learn and also teach others how to connect properly, how to rise together to the most dignified degree of existence there is.

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PhD in Philosophy and Kabbalah. MSc in Medical Bio-Cybernetics. Founder and president of Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute.

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Michael Laitman

Michael Laitman

PhD in Philosophy and Kabbalah. MSc in Medical Bio-Cybernetics. Founder and president of Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute.

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