“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? And who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people wont feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us, it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to be the same. As we are liberated from our own fears, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Nelson Mandela, Inaugural speech 1994
Postscript: 22 Sep. Always check and double check your sources. When I finally got to check Nelson’s addresses here and here seems these words were not there. A further check suggests they should be attributed to Marianne Williamson from a volume called “A Return to Love.” (Kind of ironic since I would not ordinarily cite someone writing in this genre.) But then I have not been able to check that source either. I’ll leave the words here since they caught my ear when thinking about Baghdad and still have relevance, regardless of author.
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