I was once sent a card with these words on it: ‘Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves – for they will have endless amusement!’
It is easy to take ourselves too seriously, and to take offence, even where none is meant. Yet if we persevere in the practice of meditation we find ourselves becoming more objective. If the criticism is valid then we take note and heed it; if we are being praised we do not let it go to our head. In other words we are no longer at the mercy of our emotions.
The word humility has a rather old-fashioned ring to it these days. It is linked, however, to the word humorous which, in turn, is linked to humus, meaning soil. As long as we have our feet firmly on the ground, we shall be able to accept criticism or praise with a certain detachment. And this, in human relationships, is crucial.