Integrity is a combination of 2 Latin words, integritas and integer. Integritas refers to a critical facet of the daily inspection process of the ancient Roman Army. Each rank and file infantry soldier, or legionary, wore a heavy armor breastplate covering his upper torso. When his commander approached him to inquire about his readiness, the legionary struck his breastplate over his heart and said “integritas.” The sound of the armor and the word of the soldier assured the commander of the material wholeness, completeness, and entirety of both armor and man.
In time, some legionaries abandoned the statement of integritas in lieu of the name of their emperor. Many of those men chased fame and glory instead of pursuing the life of service to which they had sworn an oath. The legionary who remained a man of his word and a man loyal, first and foremost, to his country rather than to the whims of a vainglorious emperor, still struck his breastplate and now said “integer.” Meaning, that his armor and his character remained undiminished, complete, perfect and whole. The integer soldier was not associated with the graft and corruption and immoral acts of the others.
Integrity is woven into the fabric of your soul. It becomes the armor that protects your essence, your greatness within. Integrity is revealed in the character you display during your moments of choice. If you remove your armor, you compromise your acts. Stay strong, stay armored, stay in character.
From October 2010, http://raising-a-man.tumblr.com