Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Nelson Mandela: In His Own Words.

"Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity."

I don’t know if you caught the live/repeat telecasts of Nelson Mandela’s memorial and funeral services but I did and live at that. I saw a lot and learnt a little like Graca Machel is the only woman in history to marry two heads of state – and she was so poised and such a lady through out both ceremonies, Obama met Mandela when he was still Senator not as President and Bill Clinton woke Chelsea up to witness the prison release of Nelson Mandela in 1994 – they were right to bring her along for the memorial service, let’s not forget that moment when Obama shook hands with Raul Castro. Yeah, I saw that…And that time he took a selfie with the British Prime Minister David Cameron and the lady with that big ole grin on his face.
Obama’s speech though, I was enthralled. The man definitely has the gift of gab. Both ceremonies were a fitting farewell for one of Africa’s purest heroes and liberators. Really, it is the end of an era with Nelson Mandela’s death. Like Obama said, ‘we will never see the likes of Nelson Mandela again.’ In the spirit of remembering a hero, I found some of his quotes to share. Hopefully, we can all learn from who he was and everything he stood for.

Naomi Campbell with Nelson Mandela

“I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society … it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

"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."

"Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies."

"A fundamental concern for others in our individual community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamed of."

“I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.”

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.”

“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.” From his 1994 autobiography Long Walk to Freedom

“Let freedom reign, God bless Africa!” At his 1994 inauguration as South Africa’s first black president.

“No one is born hating another person because of the colour 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.” From his 1994 autobiography Long Walk to Freedom

‘‘They are my heroes ... This is one of the greatest moments of my life.’’ on meeting the Spice Girls in 1997.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

"One of the most difficult things is not to change society - but to change yourself."

Mandela was such an enigma and a sad loss to Africans and the world. May his soul rest in peace and may God protect his memory.

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