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Nelson Mandela 

South African statesman

Born 1918…

Nobel Peace Prize 1993..

Black civil rights leader, dissident, & politician; imprisoned 1962-1990; President of African National Congress 1990– (ANC); FIRST black President (11th President) of South Africa 1994-1999; Nobel Peace Prize 1993

Through his 27 years in prison, much of it spent in a cell on Robben Island, Mandela became the most widely known figure in the struggle against apartheid. Among opponents of apartheid in South Africa and internationally, he became a cultural icon of freedom and equality.

Here are some of his famous quotes:

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.
I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.
There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered. 
‘A Long Walk to Freedom’

A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.

If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner. 

It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership. 

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. 

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 live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if it needs be it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.

 As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

I learned that courage was not the abscence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. 

I dream of an Africa which is in peace with itself. 

In my country we go to prison first and then become President.

I dream of the realization of the unity of Africa, whereby its leaders combine in their efforts to solve the problems of this continent. I dream of our vast deserts, of our forests, of all our great wildernesses.

There is nothing like returning to a place that reminds unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.

  Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all.

  Only free men can negotiate; prisoners cannot enter into contracts. Your freedom and mine cannot be separated.

There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires.

  How can I be expected to believe that this same racial discrimination which has been the cause of so much injustice and suffering right through the years, should now operate here to give me a fair and open trial?….consider myself neither morally nor legally obliged to obey laws made by a Parliament in which I am not represented. That the will of the people is the basis of the authority of government, is a principle universally acknowledged as sacred throughout the civilized world. 

As I have said, 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.

After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.

  If there are dreams about a beautiful South Africa, there are also roads that lead to their goal. Two of these roads could be named Goodness and Forgiveness.

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.



Comments on: "Happy Birthday, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela" (1)

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