Self respect - what is it?

Matthew 22:37-40 “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”

Hidden in this passage is the truth about self respect. Love thy neighbour as thyself.. In other words we are commanded to have the utmost respect for ourselves, yet in the modern age, people seem to have forgotten this directive. Drunkeness, drugs, fornication, even tattoos and hypnosis are things that people do to themselves which show a lack of self respect for their God given bodies and minds. How then, can a person ever respect others if they take those first steps down the road to losing their self respect?

While I believe drunkenness and drugs are often a sign of people who have self-esteem issues, I cannot agree with you on tattoos. If anything many past cultures who used them treated them as status symbols or marks of a warrior’s pride.

I understand what you mean when you write of tattoos in other cultures, particularly where they celebrated a warrior class. However, does that still apply in a modern society, particularly when we see people with much, and sometimes their entire bodies covered in tattoos. Is substantially altering the way we look a sign of a lack of self respect?

What about body piercings? I find some of them quite grotesque. Ugly. Horrible. Why on earth would someone want a stud through their tongue? To me, it suggests they don’t like themselves.

Those were pagan cultures.

Be honest with yourself, you obviously know that there’s a difference between a tattoo and a body piercing. The former is a visual art and can come in numerous designs, the rest are just kinky body jewelry that are hardly unique.

And yes, that does still apply to modern society. Take Puerto Rican boxer Miguel Cotto for example (too bad he lost though XD).

So? Tons of things originated from pagan cultures. Jewelry, sculpture, music etc. Tattoos aren’t any different. Furthermore, I don’t see how that challenges the point that they are a sign of self-respect and confidence instead of otherwise.

It is all in the eye of the beholder.

I personally would never get a tattoo as I think it devalues my body. However, I have no basis of this belief, much like I have no basis on hating roast beef :smiley:

I didn’t check hypnosis either, I don’t know enough about it. Why do people say it devalues humans? Isn’t it sometimes useful for curing phobias or remembering things?:shrug:

When you are hynotized you lose control of your will. You become vulnerable to the hypnotist as well as evil spirits.

Consistently doing drugs
Using drugs every now and then

I don’t think any of those things necessarily show a lack of self respect. A person without self respect might do them, but so might a person with appropriate or excessive self respect.

Some of the things you mentioned can be addictions, others can be engaged in by people because they are fun or feel good. I personally don’t see why you put hypnosis in that list at all, since some people use it as a therapy to treat mental health issues.

A few years back, in Church, this comment caused me to have one of those shattering insights that we get every so often (mmnents that some peole call ah-ha moments).

The ah-ha moment was that if I was to treat other people as I treat myself I would have to treat them worse, not better, than myself.

For example, I would have to be critical, rather than understanding, of mistakes they make and of them themselves.

I would have to push them as much as I can push myself to finish something even though something else has come up because I gave my word that I would have finished it.

Does this resonate with any of you?

Well, the scripture does not say to treat others as you treat yourself.

I think you need to swap the word “treat” with the word “demand”. You obviously demand a high standard of yourself, because you say you are critical of your own mistakes and you give your word and then demand of yourself that you keep it. In other words, you have high expectations for your own behaviour and therefore the question is should you also have high expectations of others? I see no reason why not. In fact, by demanding high standards for yourself, you are, in my opinion, demanding that you give your best. So, why not demand the same from others? All of that points to a high degree of self respect on your part and perhaps you are setting a great example for others to follow.

When I was a kid, I vividly remember the nuns drumming into us the notion of “self respect”. Hypnosis was a big ‘no-no’ because you were surrendering your free will. Drunkeness was part of the same notion. Respect for our minds and bodies was a big issue. That meant, of course, that we should look after what God had given us and keep ourselves fit and healthy. Tattoos came under the heading of " mutilation" which is a defacing of what God had bestowed upon us. Today, when I see people with tattoos over large areas of their bodies, I immediately start to think that they are not totally happy with who and what they are. Similarly with body peircings, most of which I find bizarre and some as downright disturbing.
See what I mean right here
and then take a look at this weird head!
now tell me, please, do you think those people even like themselves? :confused:

I was shopping last night for some empty cookie tins to put homemade treats in for gifts. The young woman who waited on me had a low cut top on. Above each breast she had a matching tattoo. I am not sure what it was, but it looked like some kind of wing. When she turned to lead me to the items I was looking for I noticed the back of her arms were heavily tattooed also, but could not tell what they were supposed to signify. I am sure she did this thinking she was expressing her individuality in some way, or that it was art, or an attempt at being beautiful. I admit I am an old geezer and have different tastes, which change somewhat from generation to generation. What I think is hideous and grotesque someone else may think is beautiful. But I agree with the old nuns. It is mutilation.

Obviously she has no confidence in her breasts attracting attention, so she feels she must augment them with a pretty picture. Sad isn’t it, when a girl does something to attract your attention away from what’s really important!! :eek: :rolleyes:

I can’t say what her motivation was. What beauty is is not the same for everyone. I think when women put makeup on their faces it makes them look hideous. Obviously they don’t. They think it makes an improvement over what they look like naturally. In a way it is a statment that says I don’t like what I look like so I have to change it. People will appreciate the made up face more than the regular me. But that washes off. There is something going on with tattoos that makes people want permanent markings. I was in another store today and a young woman walked by who had piercings through her eyebrows and cheeks. Hideous.

One of the resons I posted this topic was because, if the old Nuns who taught me were correct, the things I listed show that a person lacks, in varying degrees, a true “love of self”. By true “love of self” I don’t mean that a person has a holier than thou attitude, or is arrogant. I mean that they truly are thankful for what aaGod gave them, in terms of looks, build, shape, intelligence, the whole kit and caboodle. I also don’t mean a blind acceptance of what those gifts may be. For instance, sheer hard work has caused intellectually ordinary people o rise to great heights and people with plain looks have developed wonderful talents for giving joy to other people. In other words, we can always use our God given gifts to better ourselves. However, it seems to me that individuals who abuse and mutilate themselves lack a fundamental respect for themselves and set about trying to be “better” by acting in extraordinary ways, or by artificially altering their bodies. If my thesis is correct, then it begs the question, how can they respect others? After all, the world is showing signs of pople not respecting others the way the Lord God commanded.

As I told you before, you’re comparing apples to oranges. If tattoos were indeed a form of mutilation, then make-up is as well. Heck, probably the very act of coloring your skin with pictures ought to be. However, I believe a dictionary would highly disagree with you.


  1. to injure, disfigure, or make imperfect by removing or irreparably damaging parts: Vandals mutilated the painting.
  2. to deprive (a person or animal) of a limb or other essential part.

Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2009

Also, like all forms of art, there are tattoos that are ugly while others are beautiful or cool-looking.

Why don’t we put clothes under the mutilation label since clothes too are used to enhance one’s appearance? That’s what tattoos are really. They are merely another type of accessory, meant to suit the tastes and preferences of their bearers.

Who told you that? you don’t lose your moral compass when’ve been watching too many movies:rolleyes:

Well, if we accept that our bodies are God given, then tattoos are disfiguring them, altering them and irreprarably damaging them as per your definition. :confused:

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