7/27/2008 11:54:00 pm


Posted by Unknown |

Mum reminded me yesterday of this quote I have a problem with. People often stick this one up from Nelson Mandela and say it's their favourite:

"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 are all meant to shine, as children do. We are 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."

It's actually not by Nelson but by a woman named Marianne Williamson, which is good.

I think it's rather lovely but not particularly true. I don't know about you, but my greatest fear is not that I am powerful beyond measure. Even if it were my greatest fear, I'm not. My greatest fear could very well be that I am inadequate. That I miss whatever small measure of greatness has been alotted to me because I'm to busy being dumb.

My greatest fear might be that even I have underestimated how horrible I really am.

And I'll tell you, I don't shrink because other people will feel insecure around me. I shrink because other people make me feel insecure.

Not to mention the fact that as a reformed evangelical it's crying out for me to remind everyone about the "total depravity of man" (lucky women escaped that doctrine).

I could go on. But my point is, it's nice but a load of bunk in my opinion.

Nelson could have quoted me and said "You could do better, get on with it." And I would be much more inspired.