“There is nothing noble about being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”
~ Ernest Hemingway
I have no idea what the context is – I don’t recall actually reading any of Hemingway’s works yet – but I like the idea of this in that the point of reference isn’t outside of oneself, it revolves around the individual alone. Regarding the context of hierarchies, I don’t think it’s practical to ignore some degree of comparison, but it’s relative to the context. It’s a good sentiment for dark siders looking to progress and grow but inexperienced and unaware of where to center their focus at.
It’s a given to the experienced adept though – or so I would assume: one that is experienced surely must have surpassed their former self a good few times, so would naturally be superior to most of his or her fellow men as a consequence. And I think people can reach a point where comparing the self to ones former self is a matter of course, and one can then pay some attention to relevant comparisons outside of oneself without losing sight of one’s Self as the true point of reference in measuring progression.
“A Sith need not compare themselves to others. To look beyond the self before it’s time is to follow an illusion. Comparison is all smoke and mirrors, deamons of the weak self.”
~ Miles Robinson, Sith Lord
(Written July 1st | Edited July 9th | A fragment of my thoughts on comparison based superiority.)