Celebrating Nelson Mandela Day

g. kirklandholmes By g. kirklandholmes, 20th Jul 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Family>Education

As we celebrate special days around the world, I was happy to know that Nelson Mandela Day is now one that is to be celebrated or recognized. The exact date throughout the world is July 18th. July 18, 2012 is the first time that I acknowledged it as a day of celebration. For me it is very special this year with so much going on all over the world.
So studying and learning more about this great man inspired me to write this to share with others.

July 18th- A Day to Remember!

It was a wonderful time for me when I was doing some homework and discovered that there is a special day in honor of Nelson Mandela. I had learned of this great man many years ago, when I heard of the struggles of South Africa and what some of the people had to endure. Then I remember this man, Nelson Mandela stood out amongst great men and women all over the world. Whenever we would hear the name Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., somehow Nelson Mandela's name would stand out among international leaders who made a difference in changing this world. I remember this man had a very interesting name. Since I was always interested in names, I was curious as to what this name meant? My daughter as she was a young preschooler also became very interested in names. So I bought her many baby name books, and she too began studying names. But one thing I did not tell her to do when she was little and that was to go around asking everyone she met, "What is your name?" Then after she found out their names, she proceeded to tell them the meaning of their names. Most people were shocked that a young child could do such a task. Well, looking up the name Nelson, brings about simply son of Neal, son of Neil or son of Neill. Not too special unless there is a true study of the name in the African tradition.

Who Is Nelson Mandela?

Nelson Mandela is know for strong, unbending leadership skills at a time when a place of turmoil denying people democratic rights seem to be no where in the near future.
With much bitterness, and mistreatment of a people this great man stepped forward and became a living sacrifice for the people.
Without doing any research on him, only remembering many years of his solitude and being incarcerated in horrific and inhumane conditions, yet still he lived on- yet he still loved on- yet he still encouraged his people to hold on. Wow, it was quite an experience as a young person to keep up with the suffrage of the people and how this man endured all of the time and experiences of a prisoner who did no wrong. His only crime was desiring, hoping and helping people work towards becoming a society of democracy. The area had lingered and listed as an apartheid country where change would never come! But the strength, stamina and fighting drive of this great man gave the people hope. His life represented hope and encouraged the people to fight even harder. They fought for his freedom and release while fighting for their rights to democracy. The fight and struggle lasted a long time.

Celebrating Nelson Mandela Day- Why?

There was a successful celebration of Nelson Mandela's 90th birthday in 2008 in London's Hyde Park. After that great event, it was decided by celebration organizers that it is only fitting to have this celebration every year. They wanted to acknowledge the fact that he dedicated his life, his work and that of his charitable organizations and that the legacy of this great man continues on.

Now I know that it was a long time of dedication and commitment, but the fat are there. This man sacrificed his life for his people and for the betterment of human kind for more than sixty seven years. So as we celebrate this day, we are being asked to sacrifice sixty seven minutes of our time, which is seven minutes over an hour to helping others. This can be done by supporting a favorite charitable organization or
helping a local organization, family or group. This request of all of our participation on this day is an international call to action for us to work to make this world a better place for all people. It is our hope that each one of us can do something to help brighten the lives of others.

What Manner of Man Is He?

I am sure that those who organized the 90th birthday celebration and the international intent to recognize Mandela Day knew or had some knowledge of what manner of man was he. This same question came up in the bible when people wanted to know what manner of man was Jesus. Who was this man that could turn water into wine? Who was this man who could part the Red Sea and then put the water back in it's rightful place?
Who was this man going around healing the sick and giving sight to the blind?

Such as it is, many asked the same question- what manner of man is this? We have never met such a man before? What manner of man is this that would give up his life for his people? What manner of man could stand in such horrific conditions and come back among his people still speaking of hope and how the struggle must continue on?
How would you answer this question if you were called upon to respond? What manner of man is this- Nelson Mandela?

How Did He Do It?

One way that he encourages others to do- is to take one step at a time. Now that means that you may not be able to jump out in the field right away. Or each person may have to start with a small goal in life, then keep on building and adding on to each step of the way.

He also encourages everyone to remember the mission, stay focused and to see the fight through. Now he did not say it was easy. But we do know that life ain't no crystal stair.

We must come out of our selfish modes and look beyond ourselves. We must realize that many of our ancestors sacrificed their lives that we might have a right to the tree of life.

Lessons to Learn

Lessons to be learned from Nelson Mandela

1) Disciplined work- Work with organization and togetherness to put some control in your life.

2) Consistent effort- Be stable-minded, not bouncing all over the place. Stick with each step before moving to the next level. Be stable-minded and firm in your work.

3. Painstaking effort- Oh be prepared for pain and suffering on this journey. We must realize that there will be some painstaking efforts and suffrage.

4.Campaigning at the grassroots level- Start with the people who are immediately around you- try to get them to get on board for the issue at hand.

5. Canvassing support- Be willing to go out and garner some support for the project or task- May have to step out of the box to get the support needed.

6. Speaking out through a mouthpiece- Make sure your voice is heard wherever you go- the message of hope must be taken everywhere.

7. Exercising on the rights of public position- Each of us have a right to make a difference. We are public servants and have a right to lend a helping hand especially when it comes to bettering our community, city, town, or state.

Lessons for Our Children to Learn

Lessons for our children to learn

Patience: STAND tall and wait until change comes- take one little step at a time

Hope- Always dream, wish and explore options and answers

Love- Love everybody even those who may not treat you right- still love them.

Peace- Always promote peace, not confusion, fighting nor making war. A peaceful mind and heart will allow you to think.

Understanding- Try to see how things look from the inside and outside- try to make the best of your interpretation of the situation.

Unselfish helping- Even though it is hard, sometimes we do have to put other people before ourselves. Sometimes we have to give up some of the things we may love the most.


Working hard.

"There can be no keener revelation of a society's soul than the way in which it treats its children." Nelson Mandela

Can We Make A Difference In the World?

The word, Inyaniso ("Truth") is a way of believing that we can make a difference in the world. So many times we think that what we are doing is too small or minor to make a difference. But that is not so. Nelson Mandela encourages everyone to take little steps and take them one at a time, this will help grow patience and understanding of what the struggle is all about. Change does not always happen overnight- it may take a long time, but when it comes, it brings about joy, peace, love and understanding that no words can truly express.

Yes there are so many ways that we can make a difference. All over the world, people are helping each other in times of misery and strife. Often there are some changes that are societal changes that will impact families. But we must keep holding on!

Holding On!

In order to hold on, we must first have a grip. When we have this grip, we must not let go. When the struggle becomes harder, more challenging and difficult we must not give up. Though our minds grow weary and our bodies become stressed with the problems and conditions of the world, we must never let anyone destroy our souls. Our souls are we have to hold on with. It is an inner spirit of growth that allows us to see the light even when we are surrounded by darkness. It gives us the will and the strength to go on when all of the bones in our bodies feel discontentment, discouragement and feel hopeless- but yet we must hold on.

Sometimes I lay in my bed at night in a county where we are free, and I can't help but imagine what life was for for Nelson Mandela being put in prison for so many long years for the movement of the betterment of the people. But as I imagine life for this strong man, I can imagine that he thought in his heart and soul for so many days and nights- " my people shall be free." I can imagine him saying," I am a winner for justice always yields winners."

Most importantly, we must hold on- we must hold on and never give up!



Africa, African, African Culture, African History, African Milestone, Apartheid, Democracy, Democracy In South Africa, Nelson Mandela

Meet the author

author avatar g. kirklandholmes
I am an early childhood educator and taught pre-school-kindergarten multi-age grouping classes and early childhood courses at the University of Northern Iowa. I also publish with expertscolumn.com

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author avatar A K Rao
20th Jul 2012 (#)

Being an Indian I a an ardant fan Of Mahatma Gandhi and I admire Nelson Mandela as he also took same path of M K Gandhi in his life! Thanks !

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author avatar g. kirklandholmes
21st Jul 2012 (#)

Wonderful, yes Mahatma Gandhi- yes another world renowned leader of gifted specialties honored by admirers all over the world. Thank you for your comment!

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