you've probably seen this quoted other places. it's part of a speech given by Nelson Mandela, but i understand that Marianne Williamson wrote it. wherever it originated doesn't matter to me as much as what it says.
"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? Actually, 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 won't 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 do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
if the quote about "what the world needs is people who have come alive" is my life-quote, Ms. Williamson's speech is slowly becoming my life philosophy.
for a long time, i didn't shine. i let the people around me (not my parents, but others) tell me that i wasn't allowed to shine. it was bad to bring attention to myself or to be set apart for an achievement of any kind. it was certainly wrong to be proud of my accomplishments.
i held that belief until just a few years ago.
and then i started to come alive. i found some healing for past wounds. i listened to my desire to write. i was ready to shine.
that doesn't mean it was easy. it's still hard to draw attention to myself or to my writing. i still tend to stay in the shadows. coming out is hard and takes courage. what if people don't like me? what if they reject me? (i've since discovered that i'm an HSP --Highly Sensitive Person-- and it's harder for us to shine.)
i'm really tired of living that way. i really do want to SHINE. i know that when i do, it gives the people around me permission to shine as well.
i hope it helps liberate you. i hope you shine.