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Mandela Day is not about you and your 67 minutes

Mandela Day preparations and shenanigans began weeks ago. Now that it’s international, it’s gonna end up like Christmas, where people are sick of it ages before its even arrived.

But it’s very necessary. Here’s why…

Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela in recent years.

You see, whether you idolise Madiba or you just think he’s just a distant South African memory, you’ve missed the point. Mandela Day is not about Mandela. And I hate to break it to you, but it’s not about you and your 67 minutes either.

Mandela Day is about others.

Consider this for a moment. It’s a phenomenal idea. You can brand it as many ways as you want, but the essence of it is quite astounding when you really think about what it could mean for everything. Because essentially, this idea cuts to the heart of every human being. It’s this idea of grace.

Perhaps it’s the most removed practice from our post-modern society here in the 21st century. The evidence for the absence of grace, or the absence of altruism, is everywhere. But rather than dwell on that, consider this thing carefully, because the idea of putting others before yourself, of considering others, of being helpful to others, in the simple things and in the big things, could very quickly change the world.

If this concept was embraced, can you imagine what the world would look like?

There’d be no road rage. The planet would be cleaner. There’d be no guns because there’d be no wars and no need for wars. The only tears would be tears of joy. And everyone in South Africa would stop reacting so angrily to Julius Malema and someone would help the poor guy out by just giving him an enema already.

Imagine that kind of world! A world where people looked out for each other. I think Nelson Mandela existed in that kind of world. How else could you influence as much as he did without having a worldview where the needs of others were before your own?

I know it’s not a new idea, but in some ways I feel it’s become a more challenging idea now than previously. Don’t you think?

That said, it’s probably just me. Please excuse the self-help blog. I’d better sign off now. Much self-denial to do.


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