On Mandela Day

Thursday, July 18th is Nelson Mandela International Day … and the humanitarian’s 95th birthday. I have several South Africans who are regulars here, and perhaps they are best to describe Mandela’s impact. Therefore, I will keep it simple by including some of his quotes below, followed by a musical tribute and two reference sites.

We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference.

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

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.

We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.

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

Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.

The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

Let freedom reign. The sun never set on so glorious a human achievement.

Courage is not the absence of fear — it s inspiring others to move beyond it.

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

Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished.

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.

Here are two sites for today: One from the UN and another site designed for promoting day.

38 thoughts on “On Mandela Day

  1. Frank I add this poem here, written by a very special friend of mine, and I do so with his permission


    Was it prison that made Nelson Mandela, ‘Madiba’,
    This militant, revered by Blacks, from Cape to Kariba.
    If reminiscing upon his past is not a heinous crime,
    Reveal to me this man, down those corridors of time;

    Show me the man with bloodlust hate in his heart,
    Constantly prepared to rip his ancestral home apart.
    Did he shout “Death to the Whites, prepare now for war”,
    Can we liken him to Chaka, with a bloodlust for gore.

    Walking meekly from prison, bearing sacrificial fleece,
    Offering all South Africans stability and peace;
    Leaving bitterness and hatred behind in that prison.
    At daybreak upon South Africa, a ne
    w son had arisen

    A new son of Africa bearing no prejudice nor hate,
    Through his endearing smile his role was consummate
    Watching crowds in wonder, expecting civil commotion,
    Mandela soothed the wounds with unique Madiba potion.

    He presented such an aura, making reality seem surreal
    The star playground attraction, the brilliant Ferris wheel
    Dancing his enigmatic jig with Kings and with Queens;
    Equally at home with Presidents, Bishops and Deans

    A twinkle in his eye; winning nations to his cause,
    A raconteur, an orator acclaiming world applause.
    His lesson left to us in time, is not to “talk the talk”
    His walk to freedom showing us how to ‘walk the walk’

    Soweto now South Africa …Soweto now?

    Written by Alf Hutchison South African Poet
    Author of “Sounds of Distant Drums”


    • Bulldog,
      I was hoping you would add something fitting and profound, and this exceeds my expectations. Simply outstanding, and pass along my praise to Alf for his work and thanks for allow you to post it here. Thank you Bulldog!


  2. I’m so happy that he has lived this long. It seemed his illness might overcome him just a week or so ago. That has led us all to be even more grateful for the courage and strength of the human spirit. Great post.


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