LETTER | Who is Nelson Mandela today?
When he died, I was eight and it was like losing someone from one’s own family. Such was his magnitude and effect on me. I considered him more like an older grandfather figure to me, says the writer.
I am writing this letter on the occasion of Mandela's birth anniversary.
Who is Nelson Mandela today? Or what is Nelson Mandela for us?
For me, he was a man who had the will, soul and passion to break the barriers that obstructed all in their development.
When he died, I was eight and it was like losing someone from one’s own family. Such was his magnitude and effect on me. I considered him more like an older grandfather figure to me.
Nelson Mandela wouldn’t be happy to see where we are headed. Constant disruptions in governments, failure to provide adequate resources to people, a war going on, several civil wars, increasing income inequality and the havoc climate change is bringing and pushing more people to the periphery. We are increasingly moving away from each other, becoming ignorant and intolerant of the needs of our fellow beings.
I believe we need to remember Madiba and his calibre and patience is what is required to deal with all. As he said, he climbed just one mountain and when he reached the mountain top, he saw that there were many more to climb. It is our duty to transcend ourselves.
We need to pause for introspection of ourselves, how we conduct ourselves, our relations and wellbeing.
We need to gauge our mistakes and be coherent. He made me understand that even if we are different, that is what makes us unique. and through the ribbon of uniqueness, we are bound together.
As we celebrate his 105th birth anniversary, I want everyone to remember the vision he had. Not revenge but reconciliation with your fellow beings.
He may not be with us today but he is and shall be the light that guides us in our dark times when all seems lost. He is the star that shines the brightest — the inspiration for me to be a better version of myself.
New Delhi, India
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