He is now 93! He spent most of his youth in jail. He gave up violence and led a non violent freedom struggle. He followed Gandhi. The living legend Nelson Mandela. We pray to the almighty to restore his health soon.
When Morgan Freeman was asked how he felt playing the role of a legend in the movie Invictus he said “If we can say any part of acting is hard, then playing someone who is living and everybody knows would be the hardest,”.
“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela successfully and patiently led the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. Historically South Africa was inhabited by the native Black people until the arrival of white settlers. The black people shared air, land, water with the white people. However with time the rights of black people were restricted. The quality of life degraded as many of them had to live in poverty. Immense suffering due to restrictions on the freedom of the black people was rooting deep resentment. Nelson Mandela in his early twenties decided to join the movement to fight the apartheid rule. He joined the African National Congress in 1942; ANC was a representative of small movement against apartheid rule. This needed a change. The then activities of the ANC were no match to the massive force built-in by the government to suppress the popular opinion. Nelson Mandela encouraged youth to join the freedom struggle as a counter strategy. He however preached the core value of non-violence to lead the struggle. Realizing the threat from Nelson Mandela’s leadership and his rising popularity, the then government put him in prison for 5 years without a trial. At the end of 5 years he was tried for treason and imprisoned for life. He spent 20 years of his life in prison. Nelson Mandela while in prison did not budge out to the relentless pressure put on him to abandon the movement. His resolve was to lead the freedom struggle till a conclusive end. Certain factions within ANC wanted to exert pressure on the Govt. by resorting to violence, however Nelson Mandela was firm on pursuing nonviolence as he firmly believed that this is the only way to achieve lasting peace and complete freedom. He was challenged by his fellow agitators who believed that a powerful Govt. would not care for the non-violent and peaceful means of protests and the movement would lose its momentum.
While the road to freedom looked dark and gloomy Nelson Mandela instilled faith in the followers. He balanced the freedom struggle with showing utmost respect to the people he was negotiating with. Finally in the year 1994 the first democratic elections were held and at the age of 77 Nelson Mandela was elected the first black President of South Africa. This was a long walk to freedom.
There was never such person before and never will ever be like him. He continues to be a living legend, inspiring millions and billions of people. Nelson Mandela lived the principles of Patience, perseverance & unconditional faith.
Question: If you see an unfair practice in the environment you live or work what would you do as learning from this story?