the Epitome of Humility


Lag b’Omer

hod shebbe hod

humility within humility

The essence of humility is humility. Profound. Even more profound: at the depths of our humility, the soul is encompassed by splendor. Because hod is sometimes rendered as humility, and other times as splendor, there must be a connection between these two aspects of the middah (character trait). The explanation, in a nutshell, is that by humbling ourselves, we are raised up.

In the eyes of others, those who are sincerely humble, are often overlooked by others; yet, their splendor radiates in unseen realms. On the other hand, those who aggrandise themselves, do so to be seen; yet, they may only be great in their own eyes. The splendor that lasts is conferred by G-d, and G-d alone. His glory outshines ours; however, He may bestow some of His glory upon us, when we humble ourselves before Him.

“For thus saith the High and Lofty One That inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy: I dwell in the high and holy place, With him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, To revive the spirit of the humble, And to revive the heart of the contrite ones” (Isaiah 59:7, JPS 1917 Tanach).