Saturday, June 15, 2024

19 Inspirational Quotes From Nelson Mandela



19 Inspirational Quotes From Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first black president, Nobel Prize winner and anti-Apartheid icon passed away on Thursday at his home in Johannesburg at the age of 95. By any standard, Madiba, as he was fondly referred to by those who loved him, lived a robust, fulfilling and impactful life. Few people have had as much impact on history as Madiba had. History will remember him as one of the greatest men who ever lived – an incredibly selfless man who made so much of a sacrifice to re-write the history of generations of South Africans and the world.

During his lifetime Mandela inspired us with his numerous words of wisdom, etched in our memories till tomorrow. And his words remain evergreen:

  1. I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.

  2. I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.

  3. Difficulties break some men but make others. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end.

  4. It always seems impossible until it’s done.

  5. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace.

  6. Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people.

  7. A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of.

  8. Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.

  9. Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

  10. For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.

  11. Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.

  12. There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.

  13. Money won’t create success, the freedom to make it will.

  14. We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.

  15. Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished

  16. Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.

  17. I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles.

  18. A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.

  19. When people are determined they can overcome anything.





  1. No doubt am a female Mandela without having undergone the obvious! I cant imagine how much we could have sampled from him had he not been kept away! By the way, this was a funeral of the Century. It was touching and giving shivers while entertaining and uplifting at the same time! From the debates on BBC question time (Mandelas legacy), to how the world responded, seeing how his widows clang to each other, fake sign language, to the Hells Angels performance in Both Jo’burg and pretoria…… there will never be another one, what a man, what a soul, the day he was born… the heavens must have openned!

  2. I wish our leaders would take time to read this, especially where he says” Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people”

    • I know they read. I just wish they would take the time to reflect on this and change their actions for the betterment of all.

      Ba LT, many thanks for this invaluable information. Just one thing: under quote number 1 and the last sentence, the right word and spelling is “lie” instead of “lays”. Please don’t be tempted to write ‘lies’. The entire sentence will read, “That way lie defeat and death.”

      Once again, many thanks to you.

    • Tubulu are you serious???The chap in plot 1 can hardly read, when “trying to” read a speech, its like listening to your kindergarten child learning how to phonate!! Not withstanding having had to practice the whole speechmore than 20 times, the night

    • Tubulu, that quote has been quoted rightly!! Mandela was talking about facing the sun & moving his feet forward – i.e. walking a path or way, hence, “That way lays defeat and death”, thus the way that he kept choosing, was one, away from despair!

  3. The best quote for me and which the Muzungus and Boers shy away from because it is directed at them is,”Never, never and never again shall this beautiful land of ours experience the oppression of one by another.” This sums up what he fought for all his life and what he went to jail for. But it never makes the top list of quotes. The only reason he is a darling to the muzungus is because he didn’t kick their @rses in retaliation

    • Wrong! He didn’t say oppression of blacks by the Boers. He said oppression of one (Zulu, Boer, Xhoza, Sotho, Khoikhoi, Thonga, English, child, woman, man, politician etc) by another. Mandela called for a new South Africa where all its citizens have equal rights.

    • Do you know that some Boers and Indians served prison sentences at Robben Island together with Mandela? Get your facts properly. Not every Boer or Muzungu supported apartheid. The man who assassinated the Prime Minister of South Africa Mr H F Vewoerd (the architect of apartheid) was not a black man.

  4. The departure of Nelson Mandela entails that the oppressed peoples of Africa – particularly in some SADC Member States – are under siege by ruthless living DICTATORS who cherish to punish the innocent with total lack of remorse. Will a fleet of PF plunderers ever consider to repent so as to reform into human beings? GOD HEAR OUR PRAYERS.

  5. what a great man he was. Rest in peace but let your spirit continue to rule in our African leaders in Jesus Name.A HERO OF OUR CENTURY! GENERATION.

  6. If all leaders in the world were to be like Mandela, mmmh, the world would have been a better place to live. Mandela was not just a true African, but a world figure, who could ably pump sense to the oppressors and go against injustice at any cost.

    We need to emulate what Mandela has always taught us in his lifetime. To my fellow young people, we are no longer the leaders of tomorrow, let have that time of thinking about where to put our world in this 21st Century. We need to think globally and act locally, so that this world of Capitalists should not continue to prevail.

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