"It always seems impossible until its done. "
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world."
"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."
Nelson Mandela is a living hero in my book. He did not go for the glitz or intentionally high profile hero kind of thing, just a person who saw injustice, and sought to make a change.
A change that was considered impossible. Mandela has quite the resume:
• Mandela was an anti-apartheid activist, and the leader of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the African National Congress (ANC). In 1962 he was arrested and convicted of sabotage and other charges, and sentenced to life in prison.
• Mandela served 27 years in prison, spending many of these years on Robben Island.
• Following his release from prison on 11 February 1990, Mandela led his party in the negotiations that led to multi-racial democracy in 1994.
• Mandela served as president from 1994 to 1999.
• Mandela has received more than 250 awards over four decades, including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize.
Mandela got his first law school education while in Prison
After spending 27 years in prison Mandela went on to become President. South Africa's first multi-racial elections in which full enfranchisement was granted were held on 27 April 1994. The ANC won 62% of the votes in the election, and Mandela, as leader of the ANC, was inaugurated on 10 May 1994 as the country's first black President.
Mandela has been married three times, has fathered six children, has twenty grandchildren, and a growing number of great-grandchildren.
Mandela became the oldest elected President of South Africa when he took office at the age of 75 in 1994. He decided not to stand for a second term and retired in 1999.
In June 2004, at age 85, Mandela announced that he would be retiring from public life. His health had been declining, and he wanted to enjoy more time with his family. Mandela said that he did not intend to hide away totally from the public, but wanted to be in a position "of calling you to ask whether I would be welcome, rather than being called upon to do things and participate in events. My appeal therefore is: Don't call me, I will call you."
He is white-haired and walks slowly with the support of a stick. There are reports that he may be suffering from age-related dementia.
If anyone deserves a break, and thankful recognition, Nelson Mandela does.
Mandela Day on 18 July is an annual international day adopted by the United Nations. Individuals, communities and organisations are asked to donate 67 minutes to doing something for others, commemorating the 67 years that Nelson Mandela gave to the struggle for social justice.
Namaste, and thank You Nelson Mandela for your vision & dedication.
Raffi's song "Turn This World Around" is based on a speech given by Mandela where he explained the world needs to be "turned around, for the children"