Sunday Inspiration: Dare to Declare

dare to declare
“Dare to declare who you are.
It is not far from the shores of silence to the boundaries of speech.
The path is not long, but the way is deep.
You must not only walk there, you must be prepared to leap.”
-Hildegard of Bingen

Hildegard of Bingen was a 12th century Christian composer and mystic whose music and meditations still echo in our hearts today. These words ring true for me because they speak to the power of language, especially when we use words that define and declare who we are.

Such words may be, “I am intelligent! I am strong! I am beautiful! I am creative! I am compassionate!”

Sometimes we need to say the words to believe them, and perhaps we need to say them over and over. But the words must come from our depths, and they are given birth only with courage and daring.

How do we each declare who we are? Do words really matter? I think so. Do you?


  1. Robert Davidson on April 16, 2023 at 9:03 am

    “Dare to declare…” – That is actually a poem by Nicola Slee, first published in Nicola Slee (1989) Women’s Silence in Religious Education, British Journal of Religious Education, 12:1, 29-37, DOI: 10.1080/0141620890120106. The poem is called “Conversations with Muse: you to me”.

  2. Nicola Slee on September 11, 2023 at 7:58 am

    Thank you for correcting this, Robert Davidson. I’ve no idea where this mistake was first made, but I keep coming across it and, whilst I don’t mind being mistaken for Hildegard, it’s a bit infuriating nonetheless!!!

    • Emilie Richards on September 11, 2023 at 9:20 am

      I understand your frustration, but every citation we saw from Princeton to Lumunos to websites and FB pages devoted to Hildegard credit her. Our apologies for following the crowd.

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