Madiba!…Let your greatness bloom!
On December 6, 2013 after a life of 95 years, Nelson Mandela left this earth and now rests in God’s bosom. His body is gone but his light endures. And what a light it is! There have been so many powerful and wonderful things said about Madiba’s life and his contributions to his native South Africa and indeed to the world. What brings tears of joy and pride and deep admiration to my eyes is what he was able to achieve in his own personal transformation, in his ability to ‘fight the battle for dignity’, to insist on being ‘respected’, to “see” his oppressors in a new light, to reconcile the conflict between his heart and mind.
Oh! If only we could do more of that in our daily lives, how different our lives, our families, our communities, this world would be!
Madiba said, “It is a great tragedy to spend the best of your life in prison, but if I had not been to prison I would not have been able to achieve the greatest task in life, and that is changing yourself.”
What prison are you in today? There are so many… prisons of hatred, un-forgiveness, pain, jealousy, envy, self-loathing…the list goes on. What do you need to do today to release yourself from prison? To achieve true freedom? If there is one thing we can embrace about Nelson Mandela’s life, it is the fact that we have the capacity and the power within to change! His humility and grace demonstrates to me that he did not have some “special sauce” poured on him. We all, each one of us, has this capacity built into our DNA. We must “let our greatness bloom!”
“You have a limited time to stay on earth, you must try to use that period for the purpose of transforming your country, [Your life] into what you desire it to be!” Nelson Mandela
Madiba, may you rest in peace and your light perpetual shine upon us.
Greetings! Thank you for your tribute to such a great and phenomenal human being. This is one of my favorite quotes by Madiba Rolilahla Nelson Mandela:
“Overcoming poverty is not a task of charity, it is an act of justice. Like Slavery and Apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings. Sometimes it falls on a generation to be great. YOU can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom.”
And I understand in his inaugural speech, he used words from Marianne Williamson’s poem which edifies his quote above, when she says,
“…Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Your post and these quotes speak indelibly to my heart and like your post on Vulnerability, fear (a voice) stymies me; and then I remember, fear is also man-made. That statement brings to mind a flight I was on from Chicago to Atlanta and I sat in first class next to a gentleman who was on his way to Atlanta for an interview with Delta Airlines for a pilot vacancy. As we chatted, he informed me about his career as a pilot, in the war, and all of types of missions and maneuvers he had experienced. And I said, weren’t you afraid? He said, “What’s there to be afraid of?” And I thought, lots (lol!) as he in several words said, I’ve survived. Wow, hmmmm, fear is man-made. How to rise above fear like an airplane rising above a cloud? (I love your blog. Thank you.)