Humility is often just a feigned submissiveness employed to dominate others. It is a stratagem of pride, which lowers itself that it may raise itself; and though pride wears a thousand masks, it is never better disguised than when it wears the mask of humility itself. — La Rochefoucauld
When a virtue exceeds moderation and mutates into some impossible ideal, it has become a vice. Humility as a Christian virtue has metamorphosed into something artificial today– a mask of hypocrisy — where prominent figures appeal to the masses with humble gestures.
Besides a pretense, humility is historically the cloak of the frail and passive — a sign language of the naturally weak that are unable to assert themselves. However, it is the priestly class that drilled such sign language into the masses for the sake of control.
Not only is humility mostly false, it also appeals to the jealous and the petty– reinforcing a culture of hypocrisy in the public realm. Thus it serves a petty desire to avoid upsetting others – a true indication of egotism that compromises itself for the sake of self-preservation.
Moreover, the virtue of humility slaps a pillory on ambitious individuals from difficult or challenging backgrounds, stunting their potential to contribute to society.
Humility, according to Aristotle, was micropsuchia — a deficiency, while its opposite, vanity was an excess. The golden means between the two is modesty – which is a balanced judgment superior to both vices. Modesty is the clear awareness of one’s limits, whereas humility is humiliation — or precisely, the exaggeration of one’s shortcomings. It is better to be honest and modest, than a self-serving hypocrite that appears humble on cue.