Beyond Fear


Fearless, stoic he stands above me on the hill. As majestic in his stillness as in a walk or trot. The black horse is one of a pair I regularly encounter on my walk whilst in Sweden. At times they deign to come near the fence, but never too close; other times they’ll stand afar, then glance up. Often I stop to observe their grand stance, their all-knowing demeanour, their fearlessness. 

Fear seems to be all pervasive in our society in recent times, not only on a global political level but on on a personal, emotional one too. Fear rules so much in our lives.

Seeing the silhouette of the horse against the ethereal sky I feel its courage emanate from its very being. Fearless. A saying I used to comfort my son (and myself) comes to mind and with so few words A. A. Milne’s encapsulates the motto on how to live life and how to garner belief in ourselves. 

Meanwhile I also recall a longer speech by the esteemed former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela on his inauguration in 1994. His wonderful heart-felt speech is a declaration to ourselves, to never let fear and feeling of worthlessness rule our lives. I never fail to be drawn in by the initially alarming, unexpected first two lines: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate./ Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”

Both these quotes have seen me through some tough times, supported me, given me courage, even solace. I hope you enjoy them and find them comforting, inspiring and that their spirit will equally enhance your sense of fortitude. 

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, 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 doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel  insecure around you.
We were all meant to shine like children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God 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.

By Nelson Mandela     1994