Nelson Mandela – The End of an Era
In this week's Spot, Sadhguru writes about the legacy of Nelson Mandela and the grace in which he lived his life. "The hallmark of Nelson Mandela is that in spite of going through unspeakable levels of cruelty and injustice, he did not become bitter and hateful. He still lived laughing and joyfully, not resentfully. It takes a certain quality for a man to do that." Sadhguru also includes his poem "Mandela". Enjoy!
 
 
 
 

This week we have seen the end of an era in the form of Nelson Mandela’s death. The significance of his life is not just political. Of course, politically, it is of great significance to that nation, but as a man, we have seen very few like that in the last century. Even India’s freedom struggle was incubated in South Africa. It was a certain affront to Mahatma Gandhi’s dignity which the apartheid regime delivered, which ignited India’s freedom movement in a big way. It is unfortunate that injustice, subjugation and many levels of cruelty generate wonderful men. We have to find a way to generate such men when there is no strife, subjugation or injustice. We should incubate such men in joy and in celebration. Societies have largely failed to do that because it is pain that becomes the most profound experience of most human life, not joy, love or ecstasy. It is the profoundness of that experience which spawns men of rare qualities – of incredible strength and balance.

The hallmark of Nelson Mandela is that in spite of going through unspeakable levels of cruelty and injustice, he did not become bitter and hateful.

The hallmark of Nelson Mandela is that in spite of going through unspeakable levels of cruelty and injustice, he did not become bitter and hateful. He still lived laughing and joyfully, not resentfully. It takes a certain quality for a man to do that. People remember the small things that happen to them forever and are resentful for their whole lives – not things imparted by some cruel regime, but small things that parents did to them.

The end of Nelson Mandela’s life must be a reminder for every one of us that you should not stand in a line of resentful people. You should stand alone in true freedom. Freedom does not come because of political or economic processes. Freedom comes when nobody can incite an unnecessary quality in you, no matter what they do.

On a certain day, a drill sergeant in the army was in a particularly bad mood, so he was putting the soldiers through the works with heavy bags to carry. He made them run all over the place in the hot sun. The soldiers were tottering on their legs, running out of steam. One particular soldier’s face was expressing everything that he was feeling for the sergeant. The sergeant went up to him, put his face right in front of the soldier’s face and said, “I’m sure when I’m dead, you will want to urinate on my grave.” The soldier very calmly replied “Sir, this is one thing I have decided – when I leave the army, I will never stand in another line.”   

Nelson Mandela’s eventful life has come to an end. It is for us to see that many more men like that are spawned on the planet – not necessarily in the kind of situations in which he was molded. A spiritual process means just that – the outside situations need not drive you, the outside situations do not mold you. You do not have to be whipped by the world to be at your best – you are willing to whip yourself to be at your best. When it is self-driven, we call it spiritual; when it is driven by somebody, it becomes slavery.

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MANDELA

Man ‘O’ Man
He refused to surrender
The human in him even to the most inhuman
No matter what you take from him
You could not make him a lesser Man

Born of bondage and suppression
of the worst kind. Unrelenting
in his longing for Dignity and Freedom
Lived to see demonic rule end
Unfettered by bitterness or hate
Celebrating freedom with laughter and joy

Not many a man were born
Like him till our times
Hope he spawns many
Who will live like him.
The future needs many like him

Man ‘O’ Man

 

Love & Grace

 
 
 
 
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3 years 11 months ago

We all could benefit from thinking a little more like Mandela and let his principles live through our actions. Great article and I do hope we spawn many more like him. The world needs it!

4 years 7 months ago

What made him divorce two woman?

4 years 7 months ago

_/_ very nice :)

4 years 7 months ago

man o man , first para just blew me away !

4 years 7 months ago

"Freedom comes when nobody can incite an unnecessary quality in you, no matter what they do..." what a wonderful definition !!! My dear Sadhguru.. I bow down to you! Thanks a zillion.

4 years 7 months ago

There was a place once for blacks and whites
And the coloured ones between the left and right
And for humanity it was the darkest of nights
Till Nelson Mandela came along to lead the fight

Solve he did a problem that was just skin deep
And proved that brute might can never win
That the human spirit can long endure and prevail
And apartheid can be consigned to history's dustbin....

Sadhguru puts it across so beautifully when He says that Mandela had no bitterness or hate left in him towards his one time oppressors. Hate the sin and not the sinner.

4 years ago

Man O Man: Nelson Mandela , dont bring dead back for such a person :-), just aspire