Saturday, December 7, 2013


Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela-Madiba

July 18, 1918- December 5, 2014

Rest in Peace, Nelson Mandela. 

Mandela wrapped strength in humility, endurance in peace, and spoke loudly for justice in a quiet voice.

He displayed a  resilient character, created an unmatched legacy,  and leaves much work for us to continue in cleansing the world inequality and  injustice.

Rest in Peace, Nelson Mandela.

As we consider the important  lessons of Nelson Mandela's life and legacy, I offer several numbers-- numbering his life.


The year Mandela was convicted of conspiracy to overthrow the government in the Rivonia Trial and was sentenced to life imprisonment.
Lesson:  Do what is right because it is right. Do what is right despite personal consequences and repercussions.


The number of years he served in prison until his release in 1990.
Lesson:  Good endures.  Truth reigns.

The number of years Mandela was President of the of African National Congress (ANC) from 1991 to 1997
Lesson: Choose who you will follow. Choose wisely.

Mandela was President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. As South Africa's first black president, he led a divided country to racial reform.  He established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate former acts of human rights abuses.
Lesson:  Truth, forgiveness, and reconciliation are the path to healing strife.


Until 2008, both Mandela and his political party, The African National Congress  were considered terrorists and  were included in the official defense department publication Terrorist Group Profiles.
Lesson: Ask in all things "Am I on the right side? " 

The number of organizations founded by Mandela to carry out his life's work:  The Nelson Mandela Foundation, The Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, The Mandela Rhodes Foundation.
Lesson:  The healing work is not yet done in South Africa or  in the world.  Ask: What should I be doing?

Watch Nelson Mandela's Statement at his retirement and charity launch.

For those wanting to read more about Nelson Mandela, I recommend his autobiography,Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela and  Nelson Mandela, Kadir Nelson's beautiful biography in verse and pictures.


Today's Deeper Writing Possibilities

Reflect on the life of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.

What events or experiences or quotes most impress you? impact you?

Write a  letter to express your reflections.

The letter could be to Nelson Mandela in appreciation for his life and work.
It could be to your own child-- or the children of our nation-- describing the future you desire for them.

Or you may want to write a letter to a local person you know who embodies the same characteristics as Nelson Mandela. 

No comments:

Post a Comment