Nelson Mandela’s Inaugural Speech

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Nelson Mandela’s Inaugural Speech

Nelson MandelaNelson Mandela’s Inaugural Speech

Great speeches, like great ideas, have some immortal truth to them that could have been recognized five hundred years ago and will be honored and respected way into the future.

Speeches like this stand out because they call us to recognize, understand and act upon something we know in our hearts but may not have so clearly understood until it was articulated by someone.

Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s new president in 1994 took the world’s breath away with the truth of this statement:

“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 and 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 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 our permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

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