Accepting a Compliment
--by usagi, posted Jun 5, 2014
I used to think it was me trying to be humble, but have realized that I was actually not allowing them experience the appreciation they were feeling.
Accepting a gift or compliment with grace and appreciation becomes a two way act of kindness.
Handling fame or praise is more difficult than handling infamy or blame. Therefore, one who is serious about his spiritual growth should carefully avoid being in the limelight or being praised for his noble qualities, behavior or actions. However, as you rightly observed, accepting a gift or compliment is a two way act of kindness.
Also, here is another reason why one must accept genuine compliments. In the bhagavad-gita, krishna enjoins arjuna to cultivate humility (amanitvam: 13. 8), yet he apparently doesnâ€™t aid such cultivation: he repeatedly glorifies arjuna profusely with epithets such as the greatest member of his dynasty (kuru-sattama: 4. 31) and the greatest human being (purusharshabha: 2. 15). This he does in order to help arjuna reject simplistic stereotypes of humility â€“ stereotypes that center on arjuna's so-called compassion for his kinsmen, which was becoming a justification for shirking his ksatriya duty of fighting.
Sometimes, we are also reluctant to accept fame or praise because we believe they will give rise to pride, which is a demoniac quality. However, if we learn to accept fame or praise on behalf of our preceptor (guru) and the supreme lord, krsna, then the same fame can act as instruments in furthering our spiritual mission or service to krsna.