Today marks Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday. Mandela served 27 years in prison. He came out - rooted and grounded in hope - with a smile on his face, preaching peace and togetherness. Today, the world wishes Nelson Mandela a Happy Birthday or imini emandi kuwe in his native Xhosa language.
Here are are few quotations for your reflection.
During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons will live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for. But, my lord, if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.
I had no epiphany, no singular revelation, no moment of truth, but a steady accumulation of a thousand slights, a thousand indignities and a thousand unremembered moments produced in me an anger, a rebelliousness, a desire to fight the system that imprisoned my people. There was no particular day on which I said, Henceforth I will devote myself to the liberation of my people; instead, I simply found myself doing so, and could not do otherwise.
You will achieve more in this world through acts of mercy than you will through acts of retribution.
The first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself… Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.
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.
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.
We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.
If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.
Painting | Nelson Mandela Original Acrylic Portrait Painting by Artist Derek Russell