Self is “a permanent subject of successive and varying states of consciousness; what one is at a particular time or in a particular aspect or relation, one’s nature, character, or sometimes physical constitution or appearance, considered as different at different times.” Exaltation is “elevation to power, an elevated state.”The Oxford English Dictionary Simply put, self-exaltation is a potent fertilizer for rotten egotism. Synonyms for “egotist” include egocentric, egomaniac, narcissist, conceit, vanity and most self-hyphenated terms.

Philosophically stated, self is the ego, often identified with the soul or mind as opposed to the body; psychologically, self is an assemblage of characteristics and dispositions that we may conceive as constituting one of various conflicting personalities within man. Self-exaltation is an exaggerated sense of self-importance, the glorification of the self at the expense of your soul’s God-consciousness, the inflation of self-image to the detriment of your character.

Edna Lister on Self-Exaltation

It profits no soul to gain a point of earth in desire for self‑exaltation and lose even a degree of place in heaven. It profits no soul to be exalted in reputation on earth and lose soul character in heaven.–Edna Lister, August 1, 1938.

Self-satisfaction is the curse of all earth expressions; it stultifies the soul itself. When the little self expands in self-satisfaction, self-exaltation, self-pity or any other selfish way, it draws the soul substance down into itself, leaving it withered and almost extinct. To inflate the little self is truly a death indeed.–Edna Lister, November 14, 1939.

Selfishness, disregard for the suffering of others, greed in any form, and misuse of Power for self-exaltation will cause a man to sink lower on the path of retrogression, which can continue until he has less consciousness than the creature when it first starts its upward climb.–Edna Lister, A Design for Ascension, 1941, 1987.

Whenever self enters, and the appetitive soul desires greater outer exaltation and recognition, it disturbs the vibration, which soon moves through all Power released, diluting its ability to cover transgressions.–Edna Lister, September 2, 1942.

Only the very small self, using Power to its own exaltation, can hold you back now, or ever take any gains from you.–Edna Lister, December 26, 1944.

The ascending Elect may not use the Power for selfish gain or outer exaltation of fame.–Edna Lister, September 5, 1946.

You become earthbound if you lend your name to exalt the self, and cannot ascend until you wipe out the last debts.–Edna Lister, July 13, 1949.

Those filled with self-exaltation, smugness, self-satisfaction and a feeling of virtuousness are unhappy unless they can force everyone else to do it their way; they are square pegs in round holes.–Edna Lister, Prayer, the Soul’s Aspiration, June 7, 1953.

Self always plans for its own advancement and exaltation.–Edna Lister, Unquenchable Love and Unconquerable Faith, April 4, 1954.

The opposite of humility is self‑exaltation.–Edna Lister, Jesus, the Teacher, October 3, 1954.

Self-exaltation sees everyone who pointed a finger at you.–Edna Lister, Jesus, the Teacher, October 3, 1954.

Jesus said, "Even if I bear witness of myself, yet my witness is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going."–John 8:14. He also said, "If I honor myself, my honor is nothing. It is my Father who honors me."–John 8:54. These declarations strike a delicate balance between boasting, bragging, exalting self, and speaking about God to entice and persuade others to follow law and seek the Father through impersonal service.–Edna Lister, Before Abraham Was, I am, March 18, 1956.

To fear praise is the outer sign of an inner, well hidden personal self-exaltation.–Edna Lister, The Lord Has Need of Thee, March 25, 1956.

When you say "I" about any personal achievement, you are probably boasting.–Edna Lister, June 6, 1957.

Love does not parade itself.–1 Corinthians 13:4 means don’t blow your own horn.–Edna Lister, As the World Sees Me, June 22, 1958.

Any thought of self, "how great I am" or "where I am" — lands you on the bottom.–Edna Lister, October 13, 1958.

Self‑exaltation results from a lack of the love for God.–Edna Lister, October 20, 1958.

The physical heart that contains feelings of self aggrandizement cannot ascend as high as you may wish.–Edna Lister, May 4, 1959.

If you stand before the Supreme, conscious of your present small size, you cannot be moved to exalt the self.–Edna Lister, June 18, 1959.

Your service shall be your exaltation.–Edna Lister, October 2, 1960.

All your petty demonstrations of "I will" and "I won’t," and every boast you have ever made confronts you on the Via Christa, because you are scraping all taints of the past from your soul.–Edna Lister, May 27, 1961.

Every occasion of self‑exaltation digs a hole for you to fall into, dirt slides in and anchors you.–Edna Lister, December 5, 1963.

Any soul taints, such as pride, self-pity, blame, a "holier than thou" attitude, self-righteousness, self-aggrandizement, or self-exaltation, shows on your face and betrays you if you do not cleanse it.–Edna Lister, April 13, 1964.

Pride can contain bizarre elements; it is a composite of all the rest: cut-throat competition, getting ahead of the Joneses, arrogance, self-exaltation, playing God, and so on.–Edna Lister, May 12, 1967.

Any taint of self‑exaltation will explode despite your self‑control.–Edna Lister, October 31, 1968.

Unless your preparatory work is sufficient and your desire to return home is burning hot enough, you may succumb to taints of self, which can turn unto a disastrous self-exaltation.–Edna Lister, December 6, 1968.

Every statement you make is dedicated to you. You must prove every declaration you make about yourself.–Edna Lister, Faith Complete Now, November 15, 1970.

Self‑exaltation will hold you back.–Edna Lister, February 4, 1971.

Top ↑

Edna Miriam Lister
The original Christian Pioneering Mystic,
Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of self: Old English self, sylf, "self, same."

Etymology of exaltation: Old French exaltacion "enhancement, elevation," from Latin exaltationem (nom. exaltatio) "elevation, pride," from exaltare "exalt."

Self-exaltation is a soul taint.


Harper, Douglas. Online Etymology Dictionary, 2024.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

The Oxford English Dictionary: Compact Ed. 2 volumes. Oxford University Press, 1971.

Related Topics

Boasting and Bragging