Vain

Being Vain is Evil

Vain People

(Photo Credit: Fess Fitness)

It’s important for people to understand that being vain is evil.  While one might like to think that those who are vain cannot hurt anyone but themselves, this cannot be further from the truth.  Those who are truly vain are egregiously selfish.  Vain people make everything about them.  They see nothing and no one as more vital than themselves.

You have to be really careful about being even the slightest bit materialistic.  Even being the slightest bit materialistic can cause you to focus only on yourself and overlook the needs and feelings of others.

You know you’re recklessly vain when you want people who are going through serious hardships to concentrate their attention mainly or solely on you. Even when you are recovering from a tragedy, some vain people will be upset with you because you didn’t make them a priority.  This type of thought and behavior is dangerous.

Truly vain people are not concerned about the welfare of others.  If everything’s okay with them, then they could really care less if things are going wrong with others.

A number of vain people like to camouflage how selfish they are by promoting themselves as being selfless.  They may also involve themselves in social justice efforts, charities, and etc.  What’s crucial to understand about this, however, is they lack an authentic commitment to those aforementioned things. In involving themselves in these things, their primary motivation is self-aggrandizement.  Don’t automatically assume that those who are advocating selflessness are actually selfless.  It may simply be a cheap ploy to get all of the attention on them.  You can properly determine this by examining a person’s record when it comes to charitable efforts and causes.  Look for real evidence of a person having made a sustained difference in the lives of people.  Make sure that person didn’t cut and run from those he or she was supposed to be helping.

When vain people no longer have any use for you, they will no longer have anything to do with you. They will try to veil their selfishness by saying, “Sometimes, people just grow apart,” or “Sometimes, it’s best not to try to fix some relationships.”  What they are hiding is the truth, though: they can no longer find any ways those persons can benefit them. This leads them to casting those people away. When the persons make efforts to expose their selfishness, the vain people tell lies on them and say that they are envious of them.

Again, while you may think your selfishness is not hurting anyone, your selfishness hurts many.  Learn to see that life is about more than you.  Stop always making everything about you.  If you don’t discontinue being vain, your current world is going to crumble right before your very own eyes.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Don’t Be All Style and Show and Have No Substance

Black Male Fashion

For all who know me well and those who have followed Revolutionary Paideia, you know I really don’t care too much for vain people. Too many people are all about being flashy in appearance and style, but lack true substance emotionally, intellectually, physically, professionally, and socially. It’s all about image for these people.  They are too consumed with the spectacle (see Guy Debord’s The Society of the Spectacle to gain an even better understanding of what I’m saying).  While the spectacle may be entertaining and give you some instant gratification, the entertainment and gratification is ephemeral. Some of you try to act like you are so confident, act like you have it all together, act like you are a trendsetter, act like you are rich, and pretend like you are so attractive. When you are alone, however, you get an opportunity to reflect on just how unhappy you are and the reality of your low self-esteem or self-esteem problems rise to the surface. I constantly advocate for people to be themselves and not fusions of multiple people and identities.

In no way am I saying that having swag is not useful—it’s useful! You just have to know how to have more than just swag. Make sure that your swag is real too and not just a false image you are presenting. If you know that you don’t have the type of clothing in your closet you are claiming you have, then don’t lie about it. If you know you don’t have the money to wear the type of clothes, drive the type of car, live in the type of house, attend the type of school, and eat at the type of restaurants you do or claim, then just be comfortable in your spirit with what is within your means until you are able to afford those things. Don’t commodify and reify yourself. Some people have metaphorically turned themselves into things instead of the human beings they are. Resist embracing the image and favor substance.

When you have substance, you will find that you don’t need all of that attention you are seeking. You will find that attention will just naturally come to you. You will find that you will not have to let people know things about you and what you have—they will just know.

Some people want to be all that but they are not willing to do the work to be all that. If you are not willing to do the work necessary to be all that, then realize that being all that is not for you. Place your values in substance. Substance will fulfill, sustain, empower, comfort, and reward you.

At the end of the day, you simply have to love yourself. Love just being yourself. There’s absolutely no one like you, so you should be happy and fulfilled by this reality. When you realize that being yourself is already swag, style, and show, then you will be able to convert your swag, style, and show into substance. Don’t rob yourself of substance and don’t allow others and society to rob you of substance.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison