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Pride


Chikirin
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Isn't it funny how pride is considered a bad thing in Christianity? Since I'm no longer Christian, I see how by defining pride as a sin, it keeps Christians exploitable. If they had more pride, they wouldn't languish so long in oppressive churches.

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It's good to be proud of real accomplishments. It's good to be honest with yourself about the good things in your life. Pride is only bad when you're proud of things that aren't really true or are things that make you feel better than other people (like being proud of being born into a rich family combined with thinking that makes you a better human being than someone from a poor family. Recognising that you got lucky and being grateful about it isn't pride).

 

If you wanna turn it into "self-esteem" instead of pride, Christianity says it's so bad to feel good about yourself that you can't progress past low-self-esteem bullying, because working on feeling better about yourself (which can lead to not feeling a need to push others down to make you feel better) is called evil. No wonder so many people in the church are jerks.

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Consider the Amish. They have taken the fear of pride to such an extreme that they can take pride in not being proud, and then have to punish themselves for that.

 

On the other hand, I have no trouble at all taking pride in myself and the knowledge that I am damn good at what I do and am better than most at it. As long as I can back that up I should be able to stay employable.

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Devil's advocate for a moment.  I can see how pride can also be a negative.  If you are too proud to admit you are wrong in the face of evidence to the contrary you're going to struggle in a lot of areas in your life.  This is something most of us have trouble with; myself definitely included. 

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Man has no reason for pride since all things are accomplished through God. Being prideful is diminishing God, therefore a sin.

 

I'm proud of how I worded that!

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Pride seemed to be a catch-all sin.    If they didn't like something, they always seemed to put it in the category of committing the sin of pride.  

 

Feeling like you were a piece of shit was somehow committing the sin of pride.  

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Trying to negotiate the "made in the image of God" message with the "sin of pride" one just about caused me a total breakdown. I spent the first 20-odd years of my life believing I was a piece of crap, a "poor, miserable sinner," and therefore didn't deserve anything. I could ASK God, but really, all I deserved was hellfire and damnation, punishment. To think that I deserved healthy relationships, or could have ambition and goals that weren't centered on "helping others" was beyond my comprehension. I was stupid, because I couldn't let myself be smart. What is the difference between pride and self respect? How can you love yourself, but still be humble before God? The church and the bible were packed with mixed messages to the point that even a sense of self-preservation seems "unchristlike."

 

This idea that you can't have a normal, healthy psyche is a huge problem with religion in general, but so very harmful to women, to children, to people with mental disabilities, to people with depression and anxiety. It's like it inflames your worst fears, and gives those in positions of privilege even more power to find those insecurities and manipulate them. How did I spend decades believing that I was worthless, yet those rich Jim and Tammy Fayes of the world were still right with God and beloved by millions? How come it was "prideful" of me to not want to spend my time with draining people, or to want to be treated with respect, but it was okay for a man to announce that he was the head of the household and God's representative on earth to his family? If I dared to feel proud of myself for an accomplishment, did I always have to feel that God was about to smite me for the sin of pride, to teach me humility? 

 

But really, in the words of a true humanitarian and savior, RuPaul: "If you can't love yourself, how in the HELL you gonna love somebody else? Can I get an amen?"

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These is a bit of pride is in all of us. Some squash it others embrace it. The more you can make people feel guilty about the more you can pitch your product.

 

Dan barker says it well in his song 'Only sinners need a savior, I'll take none of the above'.

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