Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Akeelah, Nelson and Marianne

Have you ever seen the movie, Akeelah and the Bee? It is a story about a little girl who has a gift for spelling. It may not seem like much of a gift to some, but given the rest of the struggles in this little girl’s life, her gift gives her strength and will. When every possible obstacle gets in her way, she still manages to find a way to live out her gifts.

Recently someone reminded me of this movie, and a quote in that movie. After Akeelah is recognized as a prodigy, she is hooked up with a mentor. This mentor reads or recites (can’t remember which right now) the following to Akeelah:

"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's nothing enlightening about shrinking so that other people won't feel unsure around you. We are born to manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just within some of us; It is in every one.
As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others."

These words were written by Marianne Williamson, and spoken by Nelson Mandela when he became president of South Africa in 1994. I guess you could say it goes back to my earlier post, “This Little Light of Mine”. We all have some way that we need to shine. Hiding your talents and gifts does not serve you or anyone else.

If you have never seen the movie, I highly recommend getting a copy of it and watching it. Get some tissues. Crying is likely involved! This morning I printed out a copy of this quote to post where I will see it regularly. Feel free to do the same. We all need reminders from time to time.


Molly said...

I meant to find that quote and print it when I saw the movie and then promptly forgot!

So, guess what I am doing right now.

Thanks for the nudge!

Michelle said...


Akeelah and the Bee was my favorite movie of 2006. I encouraged everyone to see it, and saw it twice myself. As a woman and an artist, I cherish Marianne Williamson's quote; I gave it as a gift, in a frame I painted for my 13-year old son, who keeps it on his desk. It is how I want to be in the world, and how I hope he will be. Thanks for sharing this with your readers!