What is Nelson Mandela’s heroic quality?

Monday 12th August, 2013

What is Nelson Mandela’s heroic quality? Former PCN Trustee, Alison Morley, makes a link between Mandela, Tolstoy, Ghandi and other twentieth century heroes; their understanding that the world can be changed if we change ourselves

‘I sometimes believe that through me Creation intended to give the world the example of a mediocre man in the true sense of the term’ (Mandela: 'Conversations with Myself', page 7).

This is a mediocre man who proved that there can be the highest honour and integrity in the human being. A man who is embarrassed when caught in the act of braking prison rules (passing letters) in front of a young prison guard who he knows will turn a blind eye because of the respect that has grow up between them. Mandela is hurt and embarrassed because in some pure and fundamental way he has betrayed this young guards trust and put him in the position of having to fail in his job.  He has diminished himself and created a barrier between them. (Conversations with Myself page 193).  This is a subtlety of feeling and a development of conscience that few of us will ever attain but when we read it or see it we know that this is the truth of who we could be. 

Continue reading »