Shine On!

Shine on!
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine,
This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine,
This little light o’ mine, I’m gonna let it shine,
Let it shine, let it shine, let it, Shi – i – ine!
Writer unknown
I used to require my Public Speaking students to read aloud the Marianne Williamson quote about not dimming one’s own light for anyone else "There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you”.

Those who shine a brighter light, do so because they live from, and speak their truth. A brave thing to strive for, because it doesn’t usually win them the popular vote! For those who don’t believe me, take a good look at our politicians, many of whom are cowards!

Sad but true, there will always be those who will feel threatened by your light. The brighter your light, the greater the likelihood that people will challenge you. I say stick with those who truly love you and want to be around you, and buy those other people sunglasses!

How do you know whether someone really wants the best for you? It just feels so much better to hang around those who love you for who you really are. These are the ones who can see your light, your essence. When you spend time around people who do not have your best interest at heart, you will feel uncomfortable, perhaps tired.

I think what happens is that our light can cast a shadow, so to speak, or shines on people’s darkness. When this happens, they might feel exposed or raw. If they attack you, it is very likely to be out of their own pain, so it is not something to be taken personally.

This is easier said than done, I know, but it’s probably their discomfort that you are picking up. You might ask yourself this question: "Is this my uneasiness or theirs?”

Let’s imagine your gut tells you that it’s their unease, not yours, that you are sensing…

Here’s the real challenge: When we can manage to bring respect and honor to those around us, we open a channel to their own goodness. Nelson Mandela, mistakenly credited with the above quote by Marianne Williamson, once said: "It never hurts to think too highly of a person; often, they become ennobled and act better because of it”. Interesting concept, ennobled. Did you know that the word nobility originates from the Greek gno meaning wisdom, or "inner illumination”?!

So, here’s the trick: The more we cultivate our own truth, and therefore our light, the easier it is to see the light and wisdom in others. Uncovering your own light so that others may do the same is a worthy, lifelong task, requiring a steadfast commitment. So, I want to encourage you to stay the course! You may not be popular with everyone, but the brighter your true friends are, the more they will want you to be a star!

I believe this is why we are here. To join forces, to ignite and share the light, finding our way forward with ever increasing power.

Buddhists in India and elsewhere have it down. When they greet one another by bowing, putting their hands together in prayer, and utter: "Namaste,” they are saying: "The divine (or the light) in me honors the divine in you”