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Marianne Williamson

  • 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 are not held back by the love we didn't receive in the past, but by the love we're not extending in the present.

  • In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it.

  • Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here. The spiritual journey is the relinquishment — or unlearning — of fear and the acceptance of love back into our hearts.

  • Nervous breakdowns can be highly underrated methods of spiritual transformation.

  • The spiritual path, then, is simply the journey of living our lives. Everyone is on a spiritual path; most people just don't know it.

  • To trust in the force that moves the universe is faith. Faith isn't blind, it's visionary.

  • The world loves us when we choose to love the world.

  • The purpose of our lives is to give birth to the best which is within us.

  • Our internal state determines our experience of our lives; our experiences do not determine our internal state.

  • A long-term romance is like a rose bush. In any given season, a blossom might fall off. But if the plant is well nourished, then the season will come around again, and new blossoms appear.

  • The most enlightened prayer isn't 'Dear God, send me someone wonderful,' but, 'Dear God, help me realize that I am someone wonderful.'

  • Truth will always reassert itself, given a symbolic three days. Three days represents the time it takes between the crucifixion and the resurrection, between an open-hearted response to hurt and the experience of rebirth that will always follow.

  • It takes great courage and personal strength to hold on to our center during times of great hurt. It takes wisdom to understand that our reactiveness only fans the flames of false drama.

  • Achievement doesn't come from what we do, but from who we are. Our worldly power results from our personal power. Our career is an extension of our personality.

  • The only thing we have to give to the world is our own grasp on it.

  • We think we need to create ourselves, always doing a paste-up job on our personalities. That is because we're trying to be special rather than real. We're pathetically trying to conform with all the other people trying to do the same.

  • I used to feel like I was waiting for someone to discover me, to 'produce' me, like Lana Turner at the drugstore. Utlimately I realized that the person I was waiting for was myself. If we wait for the world's permission to shine, we will never receive it.

  • 'May God's will be done' is the same thing as saying, 'May I become the best that I'm capable of being.' As we grow in personal stature, we grow into a more responsible energy. People will want to hire us, to work with us. Our progress will occur easily. Our success will be an effortless accomplishment. Things will just happen. You can have a great résumé, but if you have a rotten personality, the going will get rough for you somewhere down the line. A good résumé can get you an important interview, but you won't get the job unless they like you.

  • I have heard it said that living out of our vision is more powerful than living out of our circumstance.

  • We're often afraid to do anything unless we know we can do it extremely well. But we get to Carnegie Hall by practicing. I remember how freeing it was several years ago to read in an interview with Joan Baez that some of Bob Dylan's early songs weren't so wonderful. We have this image of genius springing fully grown out of Zeus' forehead.

  • Most of us feel on some level like race horses chomping at the bit, pressing at the gate, hoping and praying for someone to open the door and let us run out. We feel so much pent up energy, so much locked up talent. We know in our hearts that we were born to do great things, and we have a deep-seated dread of wasting our lives. But the only person who can free us is ourselves. Most of us know that. We realize that the locked door is our own fear.

  • Success means we go to sleep at night knowing that our talents and abilities were used in a way that served others.

  • After decades of declining influence on the affairs of the world, there is once again a widespread consideration of spritual principles as an antidote to the pain of our times.

  • Sobriety itself is today's high, for it is ultimately in the most centered consciousness that we find our power to transcend the world.

  • God's truth is literal truth. The illumined mind has more operative cells. In reclaiming the mystical, we take back our whole selves. Formerly barren mental lands spring to new life through the planting of spiritual seeds.

  • Spiritual wisdom is now available to everyone, disseminated to the masses as never before in world history. Finally, a few trips to the library, and we have a pretty good sense of what all the masters said. They all said the same things. There is a mass discovery that Jesus is truth, the Torah is truth, Mohammed is truth, Krishna is truth, Buddha is truth, and so on. They are all truth and they are all among us now.

  • Our religious institutions have far too often become handmaidens of the status quo, while the genuine religious experience is anything but that. True religion is by nature disruptive of what has been, giving birth to the eternally new.

  • Organized religious institutions are in for a huge transformation, for the simple reason that people have become genuinely religious in spite of them.

  • Spirituality is an inner fire, a mystical sustenance that feeds our souls. The mystical journey drives us into ourselves, to a sacred flame at our center. The purpose of the religious experience is to develop the eyes by which we see this inner flame, and our capacity to live its mystery. In its presence, we are warmed and ignited. When too far from the blaze, we are cold and spiritually lifeless. We are less than human without that heat. Our connection to God is life itself.

  • The spiritual commitment is to make every situation an object of devotional connection.

  • To appeal to God is to appeal to the action of universal love. Love never fails to come when we call to it, but it will always seem to fail us when our bidding is self-centered. The most powerful prayers are simply for God's will to be done, because God's will is healing for all living things.

  • Relationships are our primary teacher. They are the context in which we either grow into God consciousness, or deny ourselves and others the opportunity to do so.

  • Sex should be a deepening of communication, not a substitute for it.

  • It isn't courageous to go forth when you don't know the dangers. But it's very courageous to go forth when you do.

    • Marianne Williamson,
    • in Katherine Martin, Women of Courage ()
  • The purpose of a relationship is not for two incomplete people to become one, but rather for two complete people to join together for the greater glory of God.

    • Marianne Williamson
  • Forgiveness is the ultimate preventative medicine as well as the greatest healer.

    • Marianne Williamson
  • Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.

    • Marianne Williamson
  • When an idea reaches critical mass, there is no stopping the shift its presence induces.

  • Self-awareness is not self-centeredness and spirituality is not narcissism. Know thyself is not a narcissistic pursuit.

    • Marianne Williamson

Marianne Williamson, U.S. spiritual teacher, writer, lecturer

(1952)