Humility as Anavah

Humility doesn’t often seem to be an admired trait. Why would we want to think less of ourselves, when society tells us to be confident in who we are and promote our personal brand.

I prefer the concept of rather than thinking less of ourselves, thinking about ourselves less. Tough to do, and as others have pointed out, ignores the need to be aware of who we are and our strengths and weaknesses and talents. Still, I do think that most of us tend to think about ourselves most of the time anyway, and doing that less wouldn’t hurt at all.

Then I heard recently about the Hebrew word for humility, Anavah, and it’s meaning to occupy our God-given space in this world, no more, no less. I like that.

What if we each have a role, an amount of influence, a space that God wants us to inhabit. Growing to fill that role doesn’t necessitate diminishing anyone else or taking from them. On the contrary, the better we fill our own role the more likely we are to encourage others to fill theirs.


Headshot, portrait, street and documentary photographer in NYC and Jersey City

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