A Nelson Mandela Speech
I got a call on Friday saying I was to give a speech about Nelson Mandela. At first I thought to myself, easy peezy because I’m a writer, then I really thought about it and realized, how does one go in front of many or a few and honor a towering Giant in a way that doesn’t depict the man, the leader and the legacy that He is.
So in my attempt to honor this role model, you’ll have to pardon if in the middle of it all, I get a bit teary, a bit comrade like and have the edge to say Viva Rolihlahla Mandela.
Tata Madiba was sent to prison for fighting for the freedom of His people, not only that but a life of harmony for all south Africans regardless gender , nationality and race.
He said “I have fought against white domination, and fought against black domination, I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die”
How true those words have now become, He lived his words. His mission as an anti apartheid revolutionary was equality and freedom for all woman, man and child. He stood for what was right for any human being regardless of the color of their skin.
This is the ideal he was jailed for. Yet he didn’t let the harshness, isolation of jail and the motives of his jailers kill the dream he was determined to live for.
In that reaction that he had in being jailed for 27 years - I would say it is an ideal not only did he live for but he achieved. He achieved it because in these very moments, many across the globe are inspired to live a life instigated by the actions of Nelson Mandela
Since his release from 27 years of imprisonment, he has become a symbol of reconciliation and in a world divided by insatiable amounts of hate, a symbol of love.
He stated in his speeches that anger is a temporary feeling, you soon forget it , especially when you are involved in positive things and have a positive attitude.
His positive attitude was forgiveness of his jailers and those that oppressed his nation and a journey he wanted to embark on with his fellow south Africans and eventually the world. His positive actions was for the world to recognize the rights of every human being to education, to medical attention and freedom to chose their path in life.
He said that “children sleeping and begging in the streets, is a sign of an unfinished job, that there can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children. Think about the donations we are constantly asked to give. It is not of the benefit of those who ask but of the benefit of children of this country, future leaders.
They may not be in your background or the child next door but they live and need our help.
He’s involvement included making sure that His generation and the generations to come would consciously be proud of their history, be aware of their present state of being making it a point to be equal with everyone and acknowledge to themselves that they have it in themselves to continue the history of South Africa.
Perhaps you are sitting in your chair in this present moment asking yourself questions like: what can I do to emulate this giant, how can I carry on this legacy that so many are drawn to or who am I to believe that I can change the world.
Well question is: who are you not to be. Madiba’s thoughts were never about failure, self doubt but forged forward through labeling as a terrorist, protruding mindsets of the opposition and lack of understanding for the cause.
A quote from my favorite poem: “you’re playing small does not serve the world, there’s nothing enlightening by shrinking so that others may not feel insecure around you”
Mandela didn’t play small, he dared push status qou for justice, He didn’t shrink at the opposition’s opinions of who he was nor who they wanted him to be. It is this attitude, this radical behavior that now forms a foundation of a fighting spirit of the South African people and the world to finding measures of peace through Dialogue.
He also quotes Marinne Williamson is saying “Our deepest fear isn’t that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond”
I believe a small portion of His mammoth legacy is believing in the talents we have been given, never ever forgetting to dream, and have the tenacity to accomplish those dreams- hence education was one of those things that he cherished deeply.
He says” that the way in which we will achieve our goals are bound by context, it changes with our circumstances even while remaining steadfast in our commitment to our vision”
I would also add that -be not afraid to take on whoever tells you, you are not what you believe you are yet just like Mandela do it not with a heart of vengeance or malice. That‘s the staff that makes Legends and does its share to shape the world.
“We cannot go on blaming past, it doesn’t make it better, the past is a rich resource on which for the future we can draw in order to make decisions for that future” Mandela’s past life is our source of inspiration.
Yes,We mourn him in death but let’s celebrate his life in his emulating his values, his deep convictions for human life. Let the words “ long live Nelson Mandela long live”, remain true as we day by day continue the struggle to be the better human beings at heart, in attitude and in behavior.
Let His death not be in vain, let not the nation fall because one man did nothing.
That man or woman is you, look in the mirror, you can change the world it’s not impossible. We have a much enormous task ahead continuing the works of a great man “to leave the world a better place than we have found it. He certainly did.
Be the man and the woman that when you wake up in the morning and your feet hit the ground, the enemies of our freedom shrivel in fear saying: oh shucks she’s up. You would be doing yourself justice by mimicking the values he so held in high regard. Humanity in harmony
In closing Nelson Mandela said “I am nearing my end, I want to be able to sleep until eternity with a broad smile on my face, knowing that the youth, opinion makers and everybody is stretched across the divide, trying to unite the nation”. Let’s make him smile in his death.
Amandla..son of the soil.amandla
Hamba ka kuhle Tata. You’ll never be forgotten, that’s for sure.
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