On the lyrics to “Amazing Grace”:
The self-reference to being a retch…I can’t go along with the self-directed shame…nor, for that matter, do I like arrogance or excessive pride ….perhaps the two are related rather than antipodal? I’m thinking of Aristotle’s doctrine of the mean…in this case, accepting oneself for whom one is without bashing oneself for one’s faults or vaunting one’s virtues. Perhaps the historical assumption in the West has been that inflicting self-shame is necessary to avoid arrogance. I wonder if it actually makes it worse, besides adding other negative effects (such as low self-esteem). I have never been able to understand how arrogance can go with low self-esteem, though I’ve been told that arrogant people are actually quite different inside than how they appear (e.g., scared and weak rather than strong).