Robert Grant in his inspiring TED talk on “Beautiful minds are free from fear” mentions Nelson Mandela:
Nelson Mandela spent 29 years in prison as a political prisoner, having done nothing wrong except expressing his ideology and philosophy. Every day while they made him chip stone, he remembered one poem by William Earnest Henley:
Out of the night that covers me
Black as the pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul
In the fell clutch of circumstances
I have not winced or cried aloud
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade
And yet the menace of the years
Finds me and shall find me unafraid.
It matters not how strait the gate
How charged with punishment the scroll.
I am the master of my fate
I am the captain of my soul.
Nelson Mandela was grateful in the midst of injustice, shame and humiliation. Gratitude conquered his fear.
His influence on our collective unconscious is palpable when we listen to great motivational speakers and politicians who have the peoples’ interest in mind and not their own self-interest.
It lives in all of us who want to help their fellow men, women and children to lead good lives.
As you were reading this to the end, I’m convinced you’re one of us!