The word “philotimo” (Lover of honor), which is purely a Greek word, is
very difficult to be found in an English dictionary, as the definition
of this word has been infused and inherited in the collective
unconscious of the Greek culture.
Many Greek friends might smile
when reading about the importance of «philotimo», knowing by experience
what that essentially means....
Eventually the more I get in search
for the meaning of the word “philotimo” , the more I consider that
its significance is deeper and extending beyond historical,
philosophical, psychological and social horizons.
Existence of which I had never anticipated before.
According to the thesis of Ninon Chrysohoos & Robert Porter Lynch
(1), philotimo (Love of honor) means “ philo-love + timi-honor” and it
is considered as an “extremely sensitive region of men's souls that gives forth gallantry, nobility and moral pride; it is the sense of honor and dignity.” (2) :
Also according to the website of the Encyclopaedia of Orthodoxy (3) : http://orthodoxwiki.org/Orthodox_Living philotimos is someone who lives, thinks and works with an honest and full of virtue way in any situation.
He who acts with love, kindness, responsibility, pain and compassion for others.
Someone who is generous in a few words.
I would like to add to the above mentioned statements that Philotimos
(similar word: generous) acts by heart, because he thinks that is
really good (anc. greek : «αγαθόν») for someone to help his fellows,
even though they do not recognize or overlook it many a time.... (My
Ancient Greeks believed that someone should
be “philotimos” , as the opposition «AFILOTIMIA» ( the lack of
value/honor ) was a shame.
Of course, Ancient Greeks had developed
an amazing system of values, so that someone in order to gain
understanding must have depth to the very etymology of words and their
interpretation, and the fact itself they had comprehended in order for a
society being functional should rely consciously on - not imposed
by humans - Laws, but Universal Laws (Divine).
Aside to that
implication , Laws and Values are related to Harmony and Order in
conjunction with the cooperation (Synergy) –(4).
By this way they suppressed their fear of betrayal and the possibility of someone putting his merit over the merit of all.
Even nowadays modern Greeks state that someone has to appeal on
someone’s philotimo, to touch his willing to offer help and assistance .
Philotimia’s or generosity’s true meaning and application has
been circumvented and remains on risk of being diminished not only
from dictionaries, but from our society we live in.
that ,something that prevails in our age is the reciprocation to
someone’s good intention to help «filotima» (honourably) with
The arc of philotimo is too small to stop the
lack of values, selfishness, the little and large merits, and fears of
In front of philotimo a detrimental selfish tendency of people to think and act by mind ( and not by soul ) is heightened .
«Why should I help someone, if not having benefit?», is an intimate question posed by someone who thinks selfishly.
Or in the worst case to use the phrase : «The end justifies the
means» -(5), which is more tragic, because it is used in many ways even
for supposed spiritual and holy purposes, such as spreading Spiritual /
Of course now we are getting to the abuse of the very good intention for offering and love.
Then, someone who is philotimos/generous risks to become a victim in
the “ altar ” of individual plans and aspirations or of the insatiable
foresight for control and supremacy.
(This is an issue that I will possibly explain in a later newsletter of mine ).
All this occur in a society that constantly refuses to cut grasps with
Matrix, where the co-operators or associates (of the society ) are
afraid to allow themselves risk by following a brighter and less
materialistic way .
Maybe that is the reason for philotimos /
generous people being paid in the currency of ungratefulness, due to
their accordance to laws and values rooted in their subconscious
and for transcending the shackles of conventional reality.
The soul of a philotimos/generous man /woman is full of experiences, ideals, virtues, knowledge and wisdom.
All these co- exist to create an integrated man, for Knowledge without Wisdom can not exist as well as without implementation.
Knowledge itself without the «Synergy» of Wisdom, Virtue, Justice, Valour Prudence can not exist.
The ideas and goods are born and implemented by people who are
carrying the legacy of our Creator’s values, because they allowed
themselves to listen to the voice of their heart and overcome their
Creator cultivates the image, literally « embroiders » on a
transcendental canvas, what is transferred from the human soul, known as
Creator not only has spoken within, but was heard too!
Those who work by philotimia (Love of honour) and truly act according
to this value, definitely flee away to Light, because they risk their
aid for good deeds towards their fellows, even though they do not
expect anything in return.
Author of "Cosmic Light", poetry book - Xlibris Publishing and The Angels Planet on Lulu.com
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