By H.H. Pope Shenouda
Respect others, others will respect you.
Respect everyone’s humanity, whatever his age is, or whatever his position or his rank in the society, for he is a human being, just like you. Almost all people respect elders and feel it is a duty that everyone must do and only an insubordinate would avoid, whereas respecting youngsters is a matter of nobility.
Do you feel it a spiritual obligation to respect your son, your subordinate at work, your servant, he who is younger than you, less in culture than you or poorer than you...? If you respect others, you’ll gain their love and will not lose their respect.
Respect to others has two sides, one is negative, the other is positive. The negative side is to refrain from insulting, tempting others and hurting anyone’s feelings by any act or behaviour.
Whereas the positive side is showing your inner appreciation, love and respect towards whom you are dealing with, and that you hold him high, even higher than he thinks, because of his mean-spiritedness.
At the negative side about respecting others, the Lord Jesus Christ said, “Whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca’! Shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool’! Shall be in danger of hell fire” (Mt. 5:22).
But at the positive side, to His disciples He said, “No longer do I call you servant...but...friends” (Jn.15:15).
“You are the light of the world” “You are the salt of the earth” “He who honours you, honours Me” But some, unfortunately, think that there should not be phrases of respect
between lovers, friends or relatives!
But actually, phrases of respect never prevent feelings of love, but increase love and ties among people and stops annoyances.
We advise that exchanged respect be one of the most distinguished characteristics between husbands and wives for it ties their hearts and is a good example of their children that teaches them a polite way of how to talk and deal with each other.