A Look into the Inspirational Life of Nelson Mandela

Category : Entertainment
Posted By : AmnaAnees
Posted Date : 09 Feb 2020 15:18 hrs

Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa, paved the way for millions of Africans to dream, benefit from social rights, and earn a better living. Mandela was and still is the light of hope, empowerment, sanity, and equality for everyone all around the globe. All his life, he strived for the betterment of his people. His wisdom, courage, and determination induced light in everyone's hearts. Here in this read, we will take a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela and try to learn as much as we can from his aspiring teachings.
•    Early Life of Nelson Mandela
Mandela was born on 18th July 1918 in the village of Eastern Cape called Mvezo into the Madiba clan. By birth, he was named "Rolihlahla" which in local Xhosa language means translates as "pulling the branch of a tree" while locals take it as "troublemaker".
Mandela's father, Nkosi Mphakanyiswa Gadla Mandela, was the acting councilor of the tribe for several years. But he lost his title and destined promotions over a tribal dispute. With that, the whole family moved to an even smaller village of Qunu and suffered through terrible financial loss.
Mandela attended primary school in Qunu, where Miss Mdingane gave him his Christian name, Nelson. As per the traditions, all school children were given a separate Christian name.
When Mandela was 12 years old, his father died because of lung cancer. This drastic event changed Mandela's life dramatically. At this early stage of life, he became the ward of Jongintaba Dalindyebo in Mqhekezweni. With that, he left Qunu and the carefree life of this village as well and moved to the sophisticated setting of Mqhekezweni where he was given status and responsibilities of the chief.
Moving to a new place opened the doors of learning and education for Mandela. He studied history, geography, Xhosa, and English there. Here he developed a keen interest in the harmonious history of Africans who were living content life until the invasion of white people.
•    Ignition of Political Enlightenment
According to African traditions, boys are circumcised at the age of 16, and this day is celebrated ceremoniously. Africans do not take it just as a surgical procedure rather as a ritual. A boy can only inherit his father's wealth and property only if he is circumcised, or in other words, entered into manhood. The same happened with Mandela along with the other 25 boys of the tribe, but what he heard at this event changed the course of his life.
The main speaker of the event, Chief Meligqili, explained the enslavement of Africans under the white folks and said that they are not free even within their own country. Though Mandela was too young to fully understand the meaning of these emotional but true words, however, he made a promise to himself to bring freedom for his people.
•    Educational Career
Mandela started his educational career with an aim, "I started to make a study of the art of war and revolution and, whilst abroad, underwent a course in military training. If there was to be guerrilla warfare, I wanted to be able to stand and fight with my people and to share the hazards of war with them." He was a keen believer in education. As he said, "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Mandela was enrolled at the University of Fort Hare in the year 1939. It was the only higher learning institution in South Africa for blacks at that time. Nonetheless, this university was as prestigious as Harvard and it produced numerous scholars of Saharan Africa.
Mandela was keen on going to civil services so along with usual courses he focused majorly on the Roman-Dutch Law. Becoming an interpreter or clerk was considered the best profession for any black man in that period and this was what Mandela was aiming for. But luck had something else planned for Mandela.
Mandela was expelled from the university for joining protests. When he returned home, his marriage was arranged that shocked Mandela. He ran from home and came to Johannesburg in the year 1941. Here he started working as a mine security officer.
He completed a BA from the University of South Africa and started graduating from Fort Hare in 1943. But left in 1952 without completing his degree. He started studying again in 1962 from the University of London but still was unable to complete the degree.
•    Entry into Politics
Mandela joined the African National Congress in 1944 and contributed to the formation of the ANC Youth League. In 1949, through immense efforts of Mandela, this transformed into a more radical form, the Program of Action.
In 1952, he was chosen to be the National Volunteer-in-Chief for the Defiance Campaign along with his deputy Maulvi Cachalia. This was the civil disobedience campaign formed against six unjust laws. For this, Mandela and his 19 colleagues were sentenced for nine months and suspended for two years.
•    Starting A Law Firm
After gaining a two-year diploma in law, Mandela started practicing law and established the first South African black law firm in 1952 with Oliver Tambo, called Mandela & Tambo. This law firm provided free of cost counsel to unrepresented blacks.
•    Marathon Treason Trial
In 1952 Mandela was banned and in 1956 he and 150 others were arrested on the charges of treason but were eventually acquitted. This 1956 treason trial lasted for years. People of all races observed this marathon trial that lasted till each and every one of the prisoners was acquitted on 29th March 1961. He said, “Poverty is not an accident. Like slavery and apartheid, it is man-made and can be removed by the actions of human beings.” When having a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela, you will see numerous such tiring events where a man with a feeble mind might lose his hope, but this was not the case with Mandela.
•    Prison Years
A few days before the completion of the trial, Mandela went to Pietermaritzburg to attend All-in-Africa Conference as the speaker. In 1961, he planned a three-day National strike from 29th to 31st March. He was arrested for leading this strike and prisoned for five years. Mandela faced another trial in 1963, however, he and other ANC leaders were sentenced for life imprisonment this time with the charges of political offenses. One of them named Denis Goldberg was white so he was sent to Pretoria prison while others were going to Robben Island.
In total Mandela spent 27 years of his life in prison starting from November 1962 to February 1990. Mandela said, "I was called a terrorist yesterday, but when I came out of jail, many people embraced me, including my enemies, and that is what I normally tell other people who say those who are struggling for liberation in their country are terrorists." Mandela was not allowed to attend the funerals of his mother in 1968 and his eldest son in 1969. Mandela was diagnosed with tuberculosis on 12th August 1988 and was transferred to a house on 7th December 1988 where he spent his last months of imprisonment.
•    Becoming President
Mandela rejected at least three conditional release offers during his life in imprisonment and at last released on 11th February after the unbanning of ANC. And on 27th April 1994, he used his right to vote for the first time in his life.  He said, “As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison.” He became the first democratically elected South African president on 10th May 1994. He won Nobel Prize for peace in 1993. He said, “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 and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.” Mandela died on 5th December 2013 at the age of 95. He had certainly lived his life for the prosperity of other people.
•    A Glimpse of the Numerous Motivational Quotes of Nelson Mandela 
In his autobiography called "Long Walk to Freedom,"  Nelson Mandela wrote, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” This is one of the fundamental lessons of life that every human being on earth must learn and teach.
He was one of the most courageous people in the entire history of the world. He said, “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”  He fully understood the meaning of being courageous, truthful and brave for the victory of good over bad.
In his autobiography, Mandela has splendidly elaborated his struggle of life and inspired each and every one of the readers to struggle as hard as you can to achieve your goals. He wrote, “I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.” Rightly said, as we can see free nations of the world hold the utmost responsibility to spread good, equality and fundamental rights among all. The road to get freedom is hard, but to spread its positive impact is even harder and requires much more conviction, determination, and courage.
Mandela inspired me to be passionate and zealous about our goals as he said, "Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do." And this is the main key to get through the hardships and enjoy success. While taking a deep look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela, one wonders about his excruciatingly painful struggles and also his conviction of getting through it and that is remarkable.
Mandela was an optimist as he said, “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one's head pointed toward the sun, one's feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.” Despite all the hardships he had to go through, he was hopeful for seeing his success, the success of the people. His optimism made him see the light at the end of the tunnel and that acted as the torch that leads his way till the end.
Mandela said that "Difficulties break some men but make others. No ax is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end." Some people have the stamina to tolerate, live through and fight the hardships, while others are unable to withstand any difficulties that come before them. And the way we handle ourselves in these difficult time depict our true personalities. As he rightly preached that "When people are determined they can overcome anything." If one becomes determined to achieve something big and great in his life then all he wants is struggle hard and he will surely get to his goal eventually. For some people, the period of this struggle and hardships is long while for others it is short. Nonetheless, one must stick to the right path of his choice.
Mandela inspired everyone to lead your life with a meaning, a purpose, and hope. As he said, "What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead." If you take a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela, you will study that every step in his life was towards his goal. And that is what we all must aspire for in our lives. Like he said, "Let us give publicity to H.I.V./AIDS and not hide it, because the only way to make it appear like a normal illness like TB, like cancer, is always to come out and say somebody has died because of H.I.V./AIDS, and people will stop regarding it as something extraordinary."
A powerful person has the more chances of failing than an inadequate person, as in the words of Nelson Mandela "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure." Our faith within our skills and abilities can lead us to the peaks of success, however, mending our skills is immensely important to go that far.
Nelson Mandela preached to have a free mind and independent soul. As he said, "I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles." An occupied is like a prisoner that cannot think freely on his own. Rather he relies on everyone else around and this is what route causes many problems. This is a great lesson for you as you must always be friends with people who are not under influence of one type of human being rather have an open mind that can think, observe and analyze situations on its own.
And this is what makes people realize that they worth it. And if a person thinks that they are important only when they can give the best of their potential. As Mandela advised, "If you want the cooperation of humans around you, you must make them feel they are important, and you do that by being genuine and humble." This is true in every age of time, in every profession and in all parts of the world. This quote is like a universal fact and must be understood by every employer all around the globe.
Conquering your fear can pave the path for you to succeed. Mandela said, “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear." His life is a legendary example of living your life courageously for achieving your goal. Surely, each and every one of us has some kind of fears, but a brave person is the one who knows how to deal with them and how to overcome them to enjoy success.
Mandela asked people to look beyond the financial barrier. He strived all his life to educate people to ignite their enthusiasm and tear the boundaries created by wealthy and economically powerful people. He once said, “We need to exert ourselves that much more, and break out of the vicious cycle of dependence imposed on us by the financially powerful: those in command of immense market power and those who dare to fashion the world in their own image.” And taking a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela makes us realize that this is what helped black people to think of their own rights, their own well being, their success and their future in the world.
Mandela asked black people to think and analyze their past and present and then think about how their future should be. He strived hard on the importance of thinking about black history and what importance and significance it holds on the present and future of the black people. He said, "Especially for those of us who lived in single cells, you had the time to sit down and think, and we discovered that sitting down just to think is one of the best ways of keeping yourself fresh and able, to be able to address the problems facing you, and you had the opportunity, also, of examining your past." If you take a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela, you will see that he himself was the epitome of this concept. He builds his own life on the great examples of his historical heroes. In his early life, he realized that his own people were living peacefully, and within harmony with each other. But the invasion of white people ruined their lives. White people acted on their own saying of "Divide and Rule". And in no time, blacks become slaves within their own country and this was the downfall of black people. Mandela realized all this and wanted every black person to know this. At another time he said, "When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace." And this is what Mandela did.
Mandela was one of the greatest leaders the human history has ever observed. His vision and great wisdom made him sit at the throne of good leadership power. In his own words, he explained the most important qualities of a good leader by saying, "A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer, and thus emerge stronger. You don't have that idea when you are arrogant, superficial, and uninformed." If you take a look into the inspirational life of Nelson Mandela, you can see that he was a great leader right from the start.

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