Nelson Mandela - Celebrate Our Hero
The death of Nelson Mandela Thursday night has left South Africa grieving. Yet, through tears, we remember how he changed something in all of us through his visions of forgiveness and goodness. We are lucky to have been gifted with a man like Mandela whose efforts ended the dark period of apartheid in South Africa and brought light and optimism back in many people’s lives. His death is not only about the loss of a great statesman but about the loss of the uniting power he had on South Africa and us – the South Africans.
For Mandela it was always about people and he believed we could make the change. He said “If you talk to a man in language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” Mandela managed to do so. His words did go to our hearts and have remained there ever since. He showed us goodness and forgiveness as alternatives to oppression. It was that simple and that difficult but most of all what he did was beautiful. When he said: “No single person can liberate a country. You can only liberate a country if you act as a collective” it called upon all the people of South Africa to fight injustice.
The “rainbow” nation – Mandela’s idea of a South Africa in peace with itself – became a reality with the abolition of apartheid. As we all know, this did not come about without huge personal costs. Mandela – by many seen as South Africa’s guardian angel and moral compass realized that the way to freedom was not an easy one and almost with humour he acknowledged: “After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.” Indeed, the road was steep but he never stopped believing in a fair and just South Africa.
South Africa still faces challenges. Many fear for the future of the country with the loss of Mandela as moral “guide”. Let us not forget what Mandela taught us. Nelson Mandela left us a heritage; a heritage of hope and belief, an inspiration to believe in the good and in forgiveness. We recall him saying: “Never, never, never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.” Let us never forget these words in the memory of our father, Nelson Mandela