Grandeur v. Grandiosity

‘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 is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that
other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
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 permission
to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.’

– Marianne Williamson


It is interesting that we are often willing to encourage and acknowledge the ‘greatness’ in others, in our spouses, in our children especially, as well as in our friends, business colleagues and spiritual teachers.   However, when perceiving ourselves, we may feel we are not quite ‘good enough’ or ‘qualified’ to let our own greatness shine.  We may fear that it is arrogant to do so, or perhaps we have simply not come to recognition (a remembrance) of the greatness within us.  As Marianne Williamson says in her now famous quote, this greatness, or light, is in all of us, not only a select few.  It is our natural inheritance, our shared Divinity, and it is only our own permission that is required to claim this inheritance! 


As children, we may have been told that one day we would ‘reach our full potential’, and as parents we worry when we’re told our own child is not reaching ‘his/her potential’.   This so-called ‘potential’ cannot be ‘reached’; it exists within each of us, it always has done.   It is the ’music within you’. What is required to ‘fulfil or reach that potential’ is to not be content with littleness, to have the courage to step into your own grandeur, and to know yourself as brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous.   The ego’s mantra of ‘seek, but do not find’ keeps us focused on a future when we will become this, whilst making sure we never do!


To step into your grandeur requires taking small leaps of faith, refusing to accept self-limiting thoughts, and daring step by step to reveal your greatness to the world.  Unfurl those wings and fly!  If you don’t believe you are of this magnificence, pretend that you are – simply ‘fake it til you make it’ and your confidence will grow.  Playing small does not serve the good of anyone; remind yourself often that ‘the light in YOU is what the Universe longs to behold!’


It may be frightening to step into our grandeur as we fear we will be perceived as ‘big-headed’ or grandiose, but there is a marked difference between grandeur and grandiosity.  Grandeur is a SOUL QUALITY. Grandiosity, which is the opposite to grandeur, is of the ego and is a ‘better than’ state, seeking gain in some form at the expense of the other.  Grandeur has no need of recognition and ironically will receive only good in return when demonstrated.  Grandiosity will not see wonderful things reflected in your life; stepping into your Grandeur will.   Grandeur in motion is a gift to the world; it is a demonstration to others of what they too have within them, and in the giving or demonstration of this we can only receive.


Grandeur has no need to attack anyone, and is oblivious of one-upmanship or comparisons.   Grandeur knows not of fame and celebrity, physical beauty nor accomplishment on the sports field, academics or in business.  Grandeur’s inherent quality is peaceful self-assurance and contentment with what is.  It is the glory of God made manifest in you, and may be expressed in the most unimpressive ways, as the world would judge them.   Grandeur is the essence of the expression of Love; not a worldly love but a Love that created You, like Itself.  


People will notice you coming from ‘a different place’ and you will be unconsciously encouraging them to do the same, without having to say a word.  Often in times of crisis or catastrophe people unknowingly step into their Grandeur – coping abilities they never knew they possessed come into play and they lead and assist others.  Afterwards they may say ‘I never knew I had that in me’, or ‘this brought out his true nature’.  The true nature being that Grandeur of Spirit that comes to the fore when we are literally ‘stripped down to the bare bones’.   We become aware of our Oneness, of our shared interests as brothers and sisters.


A Course in Miracles encourages us to turn all connections with our fellow humans into Holy Encounters; a union between two people where time collapses, the past and future are irrelevant, there are no expectations and where only shared interests prevail.  A genuine smile and trustful exchange between strangers is one of a myriad examples of a Holy Encounter.


This world will be on its way toward liberation from a fearful paradigm when all of us endeavour to make our interactions Holy.  When we come from a space of Grandeur this is much easier and very natural. 


In Conversations with God, (Neale Donald Walsh) God talks about being, in every moment, the Grandest Version of the Greatest Vision you ever had of yourself.  Now that is what is meant by Grandeur!


That Grandest Vision, or our ‘full potential’ is not a distant destination we may never reach, it’s a simple path marked ‘Grandeur’ – already within us, each and every one, and waiting for us to choose to step into it.   Take that step, or that leap, and watch miracles unfold! 


Andrea Matthews, writing based on the teachings of A Course in Miracles

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