Rolihlahla as in Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, Nobel Peace Prize winner, died yesterday at age 95.
Rolihlahla – is the name Nelson’s father gave him and colloquially it means “troublemaker”. I like that. He caused a lot of trouble for a lot of people who were not so nice to others. He inspired people to stand up for others, not only in Africa but around the world. He also encouraged forgiveness and reconciliation through his examples in daily living, he never sought revenge or let his anger toward others have power over him – he was able to “let it go”. He was an arbitrator, a peace-maker, “one for the ages”.
I saw a news clip yesterday in which the person being interviewed remarked “we have shared our time with a great one, how many of us will realize that?” Wow. Just like being in the history book.
As I was looking through the many quotes he has left us, I couldn’t believe there was one about exercise…
“I have always believed that exercise is the key not only to physical health but to peace of mind.” N. Mandela
Peace of mind of course is something a “troublemaker” values. Peace of mind is what so many of us search for in our daily lives. His autobiography is titled Long Walk to Freedom – the title alone reminds me of a metaphorical personal journey.
As I walk today I’ll be reflecting on another quote Nelson was famous for “It always seems impossible until it’s done“. Whatever we choose to do in life, a walk or something else… we just need to start. If we don’t start – we can’t get done.
Thank you Mr. Mandela, even though your walk is over, you are still inspiring mine.