"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. 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. It's not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own lights shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."  (Nelson Mandela)  I had the most amazing and therapeutic conversation with my friend James this evening after my class about teaching and about coming into our own as teachers.  
 Teaching yoga in a way that is truly meaningful and helpful is an art.  Teaching is challenging and transformational on so many levels.   You have to be mentally and energetically sharp, open, compassionate, confident,clear, concise, authentic, steady, and willing to always learn.  
One of the things that comes up for me from time to time and has continued to show up over the years, is self-doubt or a feeling not being good enough on some level.   As I was sharing this with James,  I had this flash of insight.  What I realized during our heart-to-heart conversation was that I don't allow myself to be seen.  I show parts and allow little bits of my shiny essence to show through, but I don't think that I have ever let myself shine full blast.  
Throughout the years I have made a habit of making myself smaller in order to make others feel better or out of fear of not being ready or deserving in some way.   I find I shrink a bit in the presence of those I respect and admire, which is part healthy and part unhealthy.  The healthy part is the respect, the unhealthy part is feeling less than I am meant to be.  I am on the level and deserve to stand side by side my teachers even while I learn from them.    
I must remind myself and remember that I am allowed and meant to shine too!  
To paraphrase Nelson Mandela... who am I not to shine?  
I have matured on my mat over the years as a student and a teacher.  So why not take the next step and allow the essence of who I am and what I have to offer spill forth from every pore freely?  
May we all be luminous and the light that shines out be both colorful and clear.  


  1. I think that you have touched on something that many women, (or maybe it's just me too) have an issue with. It feels very real to me what you have said, and is something that I have noticed recently within myself as well. I have recently discovered(again) that I have been hiding some beautiful and shining parts of myself from my family and the world at large, as some form of self doubt that these parts of me were NOT deserving of shining with their own light. I hadn't wanted to outshine others around me, or cast them into shadows. But what I have been discovering is that when I do let these parts of myself show... they not only give me the pleasure of their glow, but cast (not shadows but) a beautiful light on those around me. I am doing my best to not hide my glow... but now try and share it with my loved ones and the world. When I let myself shine...others benefit from it as much, if not more, than I do myself!
    It's funny how no matter how old you get there is so much more to learn! : )

  2. I'm glad that you added that qoute... I like it very much... it is on the same lines as what I have been feeling! thanks for sharing it! : )

  3. Beautiful... Niralambaya Tejase... It is the challenge to see that our tejas, our luminous luster, our divine sparkle, is there continuously, regardless of external circumstances, regardless of who are in presence of... I love that quote. Marianne Williamson also says this. It always gets me emotional.

  4. Thank yo both for your heartfelt comments. It is an emotional thing to open and I think that is what it is all about.

    I love the analogy John Friend gave about that divine, radiant essence that is in all of us. He likened it to a gold coin at the bottom of a pool and sometimes, when the water is clear, it is easy to see. Other times, when the water is murky or the surface turbulent, it is hard to see the golden light of the coin but it is ALWAYS there. That really resonates with me and it seems that I am drinking the light and opening more everyday.

    Shine on Sisters!


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