3.7 Your Deepest Fear
Posted by Mike Kaaks08 October 2019
I must declare up front my belief in the value of this insight – that it is our light not our darkness that we fear most. When first encountered Marianne Williamson’s poem “Our Deepest Fear, it made sense of an experience I’d had in 2000.
Let’s start with how I found the poem. In the 2005 movie Coach Carter, the eponymous coach, challenges a troubled youth in his team to tell him what is his greatest fear. After a number of false starts he comes back with an answer based on the poem you see on the facing page. I was so captivated by the dialogue that I tracked down the source. Seeing the message in it’s entirety, with time to absorb what it was saying, it resonated even more.
Back to 2000. I was part of a team that undertook a round of 360 degree feedback coupled with some interviews with a psychologist. In those interviews he exposed a trait in which I over-emphasised modesty. I was fearful of my light. At the time I only thought of it in terms of modesty. Seeing it in terms of being fearful of my light is so much more informative of what I can do about it. The way the poem spoke of this issue meant so much to me I named my business Beyond Measure. You’ll see why in the poem.
Another line that I love in the poem is “we are meant to shine as children do”. It speaks of something we all have early in our lives that is so often lost in later years. This issue is beautifully expressed by Sir Ken Robinson in his afforementioned TED talk “Do Schools Kill Creativity?” If your answer to this is that you are not afraid of your light, you are blessed. If you are in or close to the other camp then I encourage you to see all that is wonderful in you.
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, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. 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.
- Purpose driven
We are meant to shine as children do