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Ask Baba Yaga: Am I Actually Better Than Everyone Else or Just Extremely Arrogant?

Transcript after the jump. 

Dear Baba Yaga,

I’ve been pestered by this nagging thought that I’m better than everyone else. This just seems ridiculous! However, I keep convincing myself that I say better things or that I am a better person than those around me. Either I am incredibly brilliant or terribly arrogant.  How do I know which is true?


You , can rest in peace—you are not better than everyone, otherwise you would not be sending this question to the Baba. ;If others knew you as I know you now, they would laugh & no longer look at you so sweetly. —then you would loathe them & yrself & sink down into the well so deep that only Arrogance could haul you back up. Recall what it is that first brought you down that well, many years ago. What sunk you then?: For neither are you arrogant, but secretly & hiddenly scared. Who are you afraid of being once more? Once you know answer, you will stop plaguing both me & yrself with these foolish thoughts. To be plunged down into doubt of self & then rushed up to superiority is the ancientest of humanly pastimes. , Step away from the well & take a stroll—I am sure you will find an even livelier occupation.

Previously: How Can I Tell the Difference Between Prestige and Personal Satisfaction?” and also the full archive! Why not?

Taisia Kitaiskaia is a poet, writer, and Michener Center for Writers fellow. She’s taking questions on behalf of Baba Yaga at



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