There seems to be a lot of emphasis on being prideful these days. We hear about black pride, gay pride, pride for having an honor student, etc. There are even bumper stickers about how proud people are.
What is this emotion of pride? And why is it being promoted as a feeling that should be basked in and displayed for others to see?
Pride is not love because it is conditional – Pride is a perceived sense of worthiness based upon an inherited or achieved status, hence it would be subject to withdrawal if that status or achievement were different. Love is unconditional and it is never changed, diminished, or lost for any reason.
We are here to fully and completely enjoy this diversity and contrast we call reality. When we feel love for ourselves, for all others, and for everything that is – we can release pride as we bask in the delightful experience that is love.
Pride is not joy because it demands to be acknowledged by others as being something or having accomplished something of value. When others do not see that value, a feeling of pride has a tendency to slip into anger, shame or depression. Conversely, joy emanates from the soul and can only be shrouded, but never diminished by judgments of mind.
Moreover, when a person vibrates with a prideful feeling, they attract others who hold judgments of hate, shame, guilt, resentment or even pity for them. When these judgments are perceived, the mind tells us to hold stronger to the feeling of pride, lest we allow ourselves to be shamed – and the cycle repeats itself with stronger feelings of resistance as we allow our minds to take us down this path.
The reason anyone would adopt a sense of pride in the first place is to command acceptance. When that doesn’t work out, and we get the opposite of what we wanted, we push harder – we resist our true selves more – and life is quite a bit less joyful than it was meant to be.
Pride is not knowledge because it carries a vibration of fear. Throughout life, we notice others who expect us to feel shameful for something that we are or something that we have done. Our mind convinces us that a prideful feeling is essential to thwart these expectations. Our mind tends to cling to the prideful feeling because it fears shame, which is its opposite.
Knowledge recognizes the self as being magnificent in its own right and that nothing can diminish the self except judgments of the mind.
That being said, pride is not a “bad” emotion, but an instructional one. When we are aware of a prideful feeling, we can release it before the mind creates fear from it. We can achieve this release by directing our thoughts to love/appreciation/joy that we created what we are, and that we have the opportunity to experience reality from this vantage point.
In this way, we can bring ourselves closer to knowing that we are perfection itself. And that perfection, that purity – although it is the only thing really worthy of pride – does not know pride.