Humility is common sense.
None of us is an expert at everything. What we don’t know and can’t do far exceeds what we do know and can do.
Some may have heard the less-than-true story of four people on a plane that lost all power in the engines and started careering toward the ground.
The pilot announced the problem and added, “There are four of us but only three parachutes. It’s my plane, my parachutes—I have to take one of them.” The others agreed. He strapped the parachute on and jumped to safety.
Left on the aircraft were a brilliant professor (a rocket scientist, no less), a minister of religion and a backpacker.
The professor jumped to his feet insisting, “I am one of the greatest minds in the country. I must survive. I must take one of the remaining parachutes.” The others agreed. He prepared himself and launched out.
The elderly clergyman started to explain to the young traveler, “I’ve lived a long life. I do not fear death. You take the last parachute.” She stopped him mid-sentence with, “No, it’s fine. That brilliant professor just jumped out with my backpack strapped on!”
Though untrue, the story illustrates something that is undeniably true.
Expertise in one area counts for little in another.
(Excerpt from the Humilitas by John Dickson)