“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.” -Nelson Mandela
This is not a new quote. It has spread through the internet on countless blogs, and likely used by teachers, therapists, and commencement speakers to the point of exhaustion. But like many deeply insightful but overused statements of wisdom from world leaders, the significance of Nelson’s words did not strike me until reading them in this particular moment in this particular essay, in this particular place and time in my life, an era of personal rediscovery and personal re-empowerment. As I ground myself in my own strength and self respect, these words are perfect for contemplation and meditation. I want them to sink into my skeleton, to infiltrate my metacognition, to infuse my realigned priorities.
Let us hold our darkness but embrace and live from our light.