One explanation of the word Hubris is as follows

Hubris, or fatal pride, was the downfall of many Greek heroes in ancient myth. In classical mythology, hubris was considered a very dangerous shortcoming; it was an act of arrogance, usually where the hero attempted to assume godlike status. (

I derive the word from a combination of Hu – the sun god- and bris – or bright. A similar sense to the word Helden in German, the bright one. Where hubris differs however is that it represents a degree of self-infatuation which is not present in Helden.

Those who are so self-consumed with their own importance that they declare themselves above all laws. We see examples in public life today. International law is ignored. Individual rights are brushed aside and instead only the whimsy of those exhibiting this quality stand before us.

We can think of President Putin’s undeclared war on Ukraine. Interested only in his own reflection this man has strutted and stamped his way across the lives of thousands, of Russians as well as Ukrainians. There is no doubt that this is hubris.

But he is not alone on the field of public ‘service’. We do not need to look beyond the shores of these islands to find many examples of those who consider the rule of law beneath them. How soon before even writing such a statement as this will bring down the full force of vengeance upon the author’s shoulders.

No, Hubris is not a quality to indulge, in either oneself or others.

Its wake up time.

Author: Keith Armstrong

Dance teacher, writer, film-maker, educationalist, enthusiast.