I first really knew of Nelson Mandela back when he was released in 1990. I was 10 years old and didn’t see what the big deal was. My parents, but especially my father, was fixated to the TV screen as we watched live coverage of this old man, walking slowly through a humongous crowd of what looked like thousands of people. With an infectious smile across his face, his gentle eyes scanned the adoring crowd surrounding him as he held his wife’s hand. He and his then wife, Winnie Mandela had their left hands up, fists clenched. I didn’t know what it meant at the time.
The next few weeks was all about this man, Nelson Mandela. I was a child and it got tiring after the 2nd day, because I couldn’t watch my cartoons or other TV shows because of all this attention being directed towards this man.
As an adult, I have an incredible amount of admiration for Mr. Mandela. His passing has every single news editorial, website, TV, radio and social media forum paying tribute to him and the legacy he left behind, and as well they should.
I think the essence of this man’s life, as an example to us all, is not that we should all become larger than life personality like he was, but that we all have greatness, genius and beauty that resides in each one of us and can only be expressed by our unique selves. The sad thing is that it will die inside many of us.
Picture yourself as a 95 year old woman or man, sitting in your chair, reminiscing on your life and everything that you have done and become.
What do you want to be remembered for?
I would love to read your comments below!
With that, I leave you with 10 of many quotes from Mr. Nelson Mandela.
“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”
“I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.”
“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”
“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”
“After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.”
“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”
“There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.”
“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.”
I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
Rise In Peace, Tata Madiba.