The Corona-virus and global consequences of the pandemic, are not going to go away within the foreseeable future. People are preparing for a new kind of future.
What will the new future look like?
At the moment, this new future is uncertain, vague, unpredictable and can certainly be exciting if you love new things, challenges and the unknown.
The question is: What will the new future look like? There are only one of two options – good or even very good – or – bad, even very bad. The direction your personal life will take we will take, will depend on the choices you make now. . This is also relevant for our global community. . This is also relevant for our global community.
Once again, Nelson Mandela[i] brings us new insight: The best is to come after lockdown.
One of the main reasons Nelson Mandela could rise to such heights, can be contributed to that fact that he chose to stay optimistic during all those years he was in prison. He said:
“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, ne’s feet moving forward.” Nelson Mandela
The question is: How did Madiba’s life change, after his period in lockdown?
Nelson Mandela and life after lockdown
Nelson Mandela primarily had a life of survival and struggle. It was only after is lockdown period – that he could see that all his efforts did bear fruit.
Let’s have a look at the ‘before and after’ in Madiba’s life.
- Nelson Mandela and his life before imprisonment
His homelife was in tatters as his first wife Evelyn Mase, the cousin of Walter Sisulu, divorced him on grounds of absence, neglect, violence and infidelity.
In June 1958, Nelson Mandela married a social worker, Winnie Madikizela during his treason trial. Winnie shared Madiba’s and the ANC views. She supported him all the years he was in prison. Winnie too had her share of struggle and suffering as she constantly had the shadow of the ruling regime watching her every move.
As lawyer, Madiba took on difficult cases, especially against the suppression of the ruling government. This took up most of his time and much of his energy. In the end it cost him his marriage to Evelyn.
Fortunately, before imprisonment, Nelson Mandela had lifelong friends and many supporters. They stayed with him and supported his purpose and vision, throughout the lonely 28-years of imprisonment. One of his friends, Archbishop Desmund Tutu, fought tirelessly for the ‘Free Mandela’ campaign. In the end, Archbishop Tutu also received the Nobel Peace Prize.
- Nelson Mandela’s life during lockdown
A prison sentence is a punishment. Prison is also place to keep criminals away from social interaction while protecting society against abusive and harmful individuals. The prisoners are our ‘lawbreakers’.
Nelson Mandela was branded an outlaw, a murderer and terrorist and internationally blacklisted as a ‘very dangerous’ man. About this, Madiba said:
Not only was Nelson Mandela sent to a maximum security prison on Robben Island, he also did hard labor in the mine on the island.
He shared this plight with his friends who were also sentenced to Robben Island. This included Walter Sisulu, Mandela’s lifelong friend, confidante and mentor. Ahmed Kathrada of the South African Communist Party was convicted in the Rivonia Trial and Kathrada was also on Robben Island for 25 years. He was a dedicated friend of Mandela and part of a committee which helped Mandela during his months underground.
Other friends on Robben Island included Neville Alexander, Fikile Bam, Strini Moodley and later Tokyo Sexwale. George Bizos was Mandela’s lifelong lawyer, friend, and a constant visitor throughout the prison years.
Life in hard in prison. Not only is it the prison food, but especially being in isolation can take a toll on body, mind, soul and spirit. Prison life is degrading and strips you of your humanity. A human being is not created to be locked up. we were created to be free.
However, as we have seen, those years were not empty. Nelson Mandela, without him being aware of this, became a fulltime student at the Universal Earth School-for-life. He chose not to waste the time, silence, solitude and simplicity of the life he led. He turned it all around and made the best of adversity.
Some people said that Nelson Mandela was a ‘saint’ as he could overcame his years imprisoned, and emerge on a whole new level of understanding, attainment and wisdom.
About this Madiba said: “I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.” Nelson Mandela
Question: What did Nelson Mandela’s life look like after his imprisonment/lockdown?
There is much we can say about the life of Nelson Mandela, after his long period in prison. It’s not possible to cover everything here. I suggest that if you want to know more, that reading his autobiography is a good place to start.
- Nelson Mandela and life after lockdown
Life changed radically for Nelson Mandela, after he was released from prison. About this he said:
“I could not imagine that the future I was walking toward could compare in any way to the past that I was leaving behind.” Nelson Mandela
Life after lockdown for Nelson Mandela included the fulfilment of his vision and his dream of a democratic and free South Africa. This became clear while facing the death penalty. He gave his now famous ‘Speech from the Dock’ on 20 April 1964. In words now immortalized, he concluded:
“I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.” Nelson Mandela
- Becoming President of South Africa
This ideal was realized. Madiba became the first black President of South Africa on 10 May 1994. He was widely revered, respected and received numerous awards that included, numerable honorary doctor’s degrees and most of all, the Nobel Peace Prize.
- New wife
Madiba and Winnie Mandela got divorced after his release from prison. They realised that they had grown in different directions. He married his soul mate Graça Machell, on his 80th birthday. Graça shared Madiba’s values and visions. They had a happy marriage and Grace took care of Madiba till his death
- Busy life.
Madiba’s life was full and busy., but he found time to do good. He made sure women, especially in rural areas in South Africa, were taken care of. His investment in children and education are well-known. The Nelson Mandela’s Children Fund is till busy on many fronts, especially with prenatal care and education.
- Madiba was free
Nelson Mandela was free and could visit freely with his family, friends, children and grandchildren. He celebrated life, sang and danced on the stages. Gone were all the shackles, bars and prison walls and long hours in the sun working in the mines. He was welcomed everywhere he went.
- Finances and social standing
Financially, Madiba could now earn his keep and became financially independent. He moved up in society and political circles and he was respected as a global leader. He became a bridge-builder and catalyst for good. His presence was magic. He inspired love, compassion, goodness and prosperity for all, everywhere he went.
- Prison is swapped for a house of his own
At last Madiba had a home of his own. Initially, he stayed in the Presidential House and later moved to Houghton in Johannesburg.
- Madiba and his magical presence.
After his long isolation and release from prison, Nelson Mandela was removed from the international blacklist as a ‘dangerous terrorist’. Instead he was now known by his personal attributes such as credibility, authority, influence, charisma, consistency, impartiality, unconditionality, fairness, honesty, truthfulness, integrity, powerful, steadfast, persistent, persevering, loyal, open, patient, communicative, giving, committed, loving and caring. Madiba was now known for what and how he was as a person – and not only for what he did. These are also attributes we can develop as part of our self-development and self-mastery program.
He became visible again . This should be very inspiring for everyone who feel they are ‘invisible’.
After his release, Nelson Mandela instated the TRC, the Truth and Reconciliation Counsel. This contributed to a major part of the healing of South Africa. He became an international speaker brigning the message of oneness, healing and hope. Madiba was also a bridge-builder and facilitator. Madiba acted as alchemist/catalyst in various difficult political and social situations.
* Support systems, friends and teachers
Nelson Mandela had a widespread support system that grew over time. He made time to sit down and talk to different groups of people that included friend and foe. Here he could soundboard his own thoughts, ideas and plans. At the same time, he took guidance, advice and help from those who shared his struggle for freedom.
“Where you stand depends on where you sit.” Nelson Mandela.
He also found sustenance for his heart and safety for his soul, in the company of his closest friends and family. He found the necessary teachings in books, and Madiba read extensively. He was also trained in different fields of politics and warfare by friends in other African countries.
For long periods he needed to walk his path to freedom in total isolation. In this silence and aloneness, he invariably needed to befriend himself while connecting to his compassionate self, his soul and his real-me Higher Self.
In the end – Madiba led, what we can call, a 5-Star life.
Madiba’s 5-Star life.
Not only was Madiba, President of a country, he had money, he had a house and a new wife. He once again had his family back that included his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Madiba also had his own chef and a personal stylist and tailor. His know well-known Madiba-shirts are now worn by the Madiba-tribe.
- Becoming a celebrity
Madiba’s 5-Star life included becoming a celebrity. His life story became blockbuster movies. His appearances all over the world were received with excitement, love, compassion and respect.
- Red carpets
Many times, the red carpet was rolled out for Madiba as he attended state banquets, international events he even had a ride in n open carriage through the streets of London, with Queen Elizabeth II.
However, Madiba stayed humble. About the event with the Queen in London, he remarked to his daughter, Zinzi, who accompanied him, that he didn’t know what all the fuss was about.
Madiba was honored as leader – all over the world. As a bridge-builder, negotiator and catalyst, he was allowed into places we could never dream of going. He had access to classified and confidential information.
- United Nations
The United Nations honored Nelson Mandela with a special day in the global calendar. Madiba’s birthday, the 18th July, is now known as Nelson Mandela Day and we celebrate this day with 66minites of service.
* No more doom and gloom
Robben Island is not a prison anymore. The first thing that catches your eye when visiting Robben Island, is the plaque on the peer, welcoming all quests from all over the world. There’s no doom and gloom. It reflects Madiba’s whole life philosophy of love and compassion. This photo was taken during a visit to Robben Island. It says:
After everything, Nelson Mandela succeeded in created a ‘5-Star life’, after lockdown. So can we – if we know how. Please look out for the upcoming course, titled: Self-coaching: Creating your new 5-Star life.
The question is: How did Madiba get to this level of attainment?
What did Nelson Mandela do in order to create a 5-Star life?
Over the last 35 days, we have learnt different life lessons from Nelson Mandela. There are still many life lessons and universal wisdoms we can explore. However, we need to move on.
As we have come to learn – what our outcome will be, totally depends on the choices we make. However, we can learn from those who went before us.
Question: What did Nelson Mandela believe, say and do in order to get to his new 5-Star life, although he was at a ripe old age?
Nelson Mandela and creating a 5-Star life.
As summary, here are a few steps you can take in creating a 5-Star life for yourself and your loved-ones, during this lockdown period.
* Age is just a number
We need to get over the traditional perception about age and aging. Nelson Mandela began to live his best life at the age of 80. Everything before this was mere preparation . Don’t let your age get in the way of living your best life. You are never too old or too young to be happy, successful, fulfilled and excited about your future and new 5-Star life.
- Universal purpose and calling
Identify your soul purpose and calling. Listen to your heart and soul. Ask what you need to do. Read Day 30 again. Remember, it grows on you. Madiba’s universal calling and purpose become clear over time. Take the time to listen…
Nelson Mandela had a clear vision of where he wanted to go, and how he wanted to live. Your vision will be different. Take the time to get a clear picture of what the end should be like. Become clear about what will make you also feel happy and fulfilled.
Decide if you just want a day to day existence – or do you want a fulling life? What must your life look like after you are 80 years old?
- A new future
Open the path to a new future. Clean up everything in your life. During lockdown we’ve now learnt what is essential and what not. We found that, what we thought were necessities – are now luxuries. Write down what you will need to be happy in your ‘new future’.
Most of all – open yourself so that a new 5-Star future can enter. Let go of everything that could block this to enter your reality and/or keep you back. Forgive – let go.
“There is no future without forgiveness.” Desmond Tutu[ii]
- Use the three S’s of success
We need to make time and place for the three S’s of life: Silence, Solitude and Simplicity. Detox and detangle your body, mind, soul and spirit. Meditate, relax, exercise eat sensibly, love freely, laugh out loud. Dance and sing. Be happy.
Clean everything up and clean out. Start new.
- Stop all negativity
Stop all negativity in whatever shape or form it may present itself. Depression , abusive language, behavior, power-games and or criticism, cynicism, discrimination, humiliation, loveless behavior or any other situation that can pull your down, must now be stopped and healed. Learn to say: ‘Enough is enough.’ Nelson Mandela said:
- Reclaim your Freedom
Reclaim your real-me authentic self. Take back your power from whoever or whatever you gave it away to. Stop all and evry abuse, addictions, compulsions and obsessions. If you find it difficult on your own – get help. This is also the time to cut destructive cords.
“I knew if I didn’t leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I’d still be in prison.” Nelson Mandela
Stop complaining, looking for attention or being the victim. People will shun you for doing this.
- Find the Truth
After his release, Nelson Mandela instated the TRC, the Truth and Reconciliation Counsel. This contributed to a major part of the healing of South Africa. Remember: The truth sets you free.
Forgive those who have hurt you. Forgive yourself. Forgive life for throwing you a curveball. Ask forgiveness. Give forgiveness. Write that letter you’ve always wanted to write. Be brace, be courageous. Clear the air.
“Courageous people do not
fear forgiving for the sake of peace”
- Revisit your religion
Revisit your religion. Ask yourself if your specific religion is still stuck in ancient interpretations and/or assumptions. Tribal, dogmatic religion is losing its stronghold on its believers.
Remember, religion is created by humanity. Nietzke, the famous philosopher, poet and writer wrote: “Remember, God is chiefly not interested in religion.’
As the new human consciousness emerges and people wake up, they become aware that there is a difference between Truth and dogmatic religious interpretation.
As these old philosophies and interpretations are now crumbling under the wave of Truth. We will find that traditional religious leaders will now work harder to maintain their follower’s commitment. Condemnation and punishment, or proving people wrong, or making people feel guilty, lost or even stupid, are usually some of the methods used to maintain control.
The other is, creating a false perception of heaven and hell, like having 70 virgins in heaven if you do this or that. Remember, sexuality as a physical experience, can only be experienced through our bodies here on Earth. The irony is that when we die, we leave our bodies behind.
There is manipulative and controlling power in tribal religion. True universal beliefs and values set us free. One can therefor understand Nelson Mandela’s views about religion.
“Religion was a ritual that I indulged in for my mother’s sake and to which I attached no meaning”. Nelson Mandela
- Revisiting Christianity
One can understand Madiba’s exclusion of dogmatic, tribalistic, ritualistic religion, including Christianity. A subscriber once asked why I write about Nelson Mandela. She said that there preacher told them that Mandela was a sinner and will go hell. She said that Mandela didn’t use the right ‘Christian phrases’ that say you are ‘saved’.
She was right. Madiba didn’t speak ‘religion’. He spoke ‘love and compassion’. Sometimes this is a language people don’t understand.
I realized that we still have many people that are so indoctrinated by and with their belief system. They still believe that you must use dogmatic quotes and religious terminology/jargon, in order to be accepted.
Nelson Mandela refrained from falling into this trap. He didn’t use religious refrains and references. His lived this all without saying and word. Deep down he believed:
“As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” Nelson Mandela quoting Marianne Williamson
Remember, Madiba was a Bible scholar and teacher. However, he was persecuted by a Christian National Government and apartheids regime. These are two mutually exclusive concepts. How can it be?
There is big difference between saying you are a ‘Christian’ and living as a Christian. The time is coming that dogmatic religion will crumble and make way for higher levels of spirituality. We will then not ask if someone is a Christian, Muslim, Buddhist or Hindu etc… anymore. We will ask – Can you truly love and be loved? We will ask: are you anointed by God – anointed with Light and Love? We will start with self before we look to others and make judgement.
A little bit of background: The word ‘Christ’ is a title, a term given to someone held in high regard, like Dr or Rev. It means – the ‘Anointed of God’ – the anointed with Light. This is the Christ light as portrayed by Jesus. He was known as Jesus Christ.
A Christian is in essence, a light bearer. Are you a light-bearer bringing your special light to the world – or not? Listen to your heart and soul for the answer.
This universal belief system taking us to a ‘universal religion’.
- Universal religion – Love
A universal religion is merging. It is a belief system founded on Love. People are guided by the Love-law. The old rules of poverty and chastity are making way for new quidelines of love and abundance. This is what Jesus taught. He said: ‘I am come that you may have Life – and that in abundance.”
There are three steps: Love God – Love self – Love others as self. This is all we need. The rest will follow and fall into place. This is also the teaching of Christ Jesus. I know that most of my religious friends will be reluctant to agree, but this is also the basic teaching of Buddha, Krishna and Allah.
Some food for thought: Just ask yourself: If there was a gadget like, let’s say, a Love-o-meter – where would you and I stand? If there was something like a spiritual-light-meter; how bright would you shine? Would we pass the test?
The Universal Love-law teaches us about. peace, compassion and non-judgement. What did Nelson Mandela have to say about this?
‘People must learn to hate. If they can learn to hate, they can also learn to love”.
When asked what he thought about the Christian religious regime that put him in prison, Madiba said he vowed to never say anything negative about another. With this he released himself from being judgmental.
People are so quick to judge, to make comments as if they knew what was really going one. In essence, it’s a sign of ignorance. Even Madiba came to realize this truth. He said:
“I came to accept that I have no right whatsoever to judge others in terms of my own customs.” Nelson Mandela[v]
- Stand up for what is right
We all need to stand for something – or we will fall for everything. The survival of humanity depends on it.
“We fought injustice wherever we found it, no matter how large, or how small, and we fought injustice to preserve our own humanity.” Nelson Mandela
- Make peace
It makes one concerned how many people are addicted to violence, emotional dramas, conflict and negativity. Violent moves/TV-shows are freely available. Although they have age restrictions – many small children are exposed to this kind of influence and energy.
Some people think that peace is only for weaklings. They feel that fighting, intimidation etc… make you strong. However, this only proves how ignorant we are.
“Peace is the greatest weapon for development that any person can have.” Nelson Mandela
Our challenge is to make peace. First, we have to make peace with our Creator, God. Then with self. We need to fight our inner demons – our own shadow ego-self, for e are sometimes our own worst enemy.
“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.” Nelson Mandela
Enlightened, christed people, are focused on making peace and bringing Light. They are devoted to clearing the air, so to speak.
When Madiba asked why he reverted to violence, he said:
“I was a young man who attempted to make up for his ignorance with militancy.”
- Become a bridgebuilder and alchemist
The new emerging thinkers and leaders are our new pathfinders, mapmakers, bridge-builders, catalysts or alchemists. An Alchemist is somebody who changes lower order basic concepts that feed the ego, into higher universal wisdoms that feed to soul. They are courageous and live fearlessly. Such a man was Jesus Christ.
“Courageous people do not fear forgiving for the sake of peace”. Nelson Mandela
- Turn negativity around
Madiba was adamant that nothing is ever as bad as it seems. We always have the choice to become better – not bitter. About adversity he said:
“There are few misfortunes in this world that you cannot turn into a personal triumph if you have the iron will and the necessary skill”’ Nelson Mandela
- Remember – nothing is ever the way that it seems
Remember, nothing is ever as it seems. Not even the Covid-19 virus pandemic. We have to take a closer look to see what is really going on on deeper, spiritual levels. We may never know… About this Nelson Mandela said: “Nothing is ever black or white.”
- Make quality choices
We are at a crossroads in life. Not only personally – but as a humanity. We need to make new choices. We need to decide in what direction we will go. Nelson Mandela says:
“May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.” Nelson Mandela
Unfortunately, there could be a nasty surprise at the end of the tunnel for those who sit around idle. The reason is:
“Life has a way of forcing decisions on those who vacillate.” Nelson Mandela
* Create abundance
We were created to be co-creators with the Creator, the Universe. Poverty, lack and illness are not supposed to be part of our existence. About this, Nelson Mandela said: ‘ Poverty, like Apartheid, is man-made’ .
We can change it all if we know how. We can change this all if we know how. We can learn to manifest our heart’s desires.
- Live fearlessly
Overcome your fears. Remember – truth will set you free.
- Permission to shine
Give yourself and others permission to shine. Let go of jealously and resentment toward others who are shining. Remember, this comes from your own inner lower ego-self. This is your inner demon you need to overcome. Rather bring your light to the world
- Overcome your ego arrogance and inferiority
We are now redefining and redesigning our value system. We are re-inventing a new picture of success. (see day 5). According to our old system people become arrogant when they have positions and possessions. People feel inferior if they don’t have all the bling. Nelson Mandela also saw this: There is a need to get over our self and conquer the ego. Madiba said
“The trouble, of course, is that most successful men are prone to some form of vanity. There comes a stage in their lives when they consider it permissible to be egotistic and to brag to the public at large about their unique achievements.” Nelson Mandela[vi]
The challenge is: Let go of arrogance and inferiority. Claim your real authentic self-worth that is not attached to anything material.
- Take care of your soul
Remember, we are on a spiritual life journey in a physical body. Nelson Mandela reminds us to take care of our soul with a poem he cherished.
It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.
- Hold the faith, hold the hope
Times might get difficult in the future. Nelson Mandela shares more of his wisdom to help and inspire us on this path.
- Prepare for the future
We are currently preparing for a new future. It’s not a straight and easy path. Fortunately, the new future looks bright for those who put in the effort.
“A new world will be won not by those who stand at a distance with their arms folded, but by those who are in the arena, whose garments are torn by storms and whose bodies are maimed in the course of the contest” Nelson Mandela[vii]
With our new future in mind, we can start to celebrate. We don’t always need to wait till then – that at the moment seems far away. Celebrate any time and at any opportunity you can get. Have fun!
Nelson Mandela loved sport, music and dance. He laughed easily, was a prankster and loved humor and … he loved fun!
- Bring your contributions to the marketplace of life.
Everyone has a contribution to make. Nelson Mandela also believed:
‘Your playing small does not serve the world. Who are you not to be great?’
- Become a winner
There are still many challenges to overcome. Decide if you are going to a victim or victorious. Are you going to be a loser or a winner?
About this Madiba said: “A winner is a dreamer who never gives up”
* Remember – we are all in this together
We are all in this together. It’s time to take hands and make it work. This is what Madiba did when he made his mark.
“No single person can liberate a country. You can only liberate a country if you act as a collective.” Nelson Mandela
- Remember, the world is round
We’ve learnt- what we sow we will reap. The reason is: The world is round. The Universe will give you back the fruit of your effort. The seeds we sown will bear fruit in the end. Nelson Mandel knew this fact. He said:
“The world is truly round and seems to start and end with those we love” Nelson Mandela
Sow the good seeds if you want a 5-Star future full of happiness and fulfillment like Nelson Mandela.
- Enjoy the journey
Life is an exciting journey full of prizes, surprises and booby-prizes.
“Live life as though nobody is watching, and express yourself as though everyone is listening.” Nelson Mandela.
Enjoy the ride. It will be what you make of this all. Be prepared to experience it all – blood, sweat and tears. Have fun, celebrate, for we do not know what tomorrow will bring. Madiba shares this life-view. He said:
Tread softly; Breathe peacefully;
- Go within
First go within and speak to God, speak to real-me self, before you start creating your new life.
“Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again”. Joseph Campbell
- Build your knowledge and skills capacity
Only those who have built up stamina for life and developed new skills and tools to manage and master life, will be able to make it to the next level. Others will stay behind
“I quickly realised that I had to make my way on the basis of my ability, not my heritage.” Nelson Mandela
- Be real and authentic
Become real and authentic. Nelson Mandela made this shift while he was a student at Fort Hare. Nelson Mandela decided to let go of all fear and be real.
- Learn to coach yourself
Our next season in personal training and development, is to learn to coach ourselves. Self-coaching is now becoming a necessity for any successful person and/or business. On Monday, 04 May we will start with the first of a series of courses: Self-coaching: Creating your new 5-Star life. About this Madiba said:
“Once a person is determined to help themselves, there is nothing that can stop them.”
We have come to then end of these Life Lessons from Nelson Mandela during lockdown. I hope you have enjoyed reading this as much as I have enjoyed the research and writing.
However, its time for something new. We will continue with the upcoming course where we can learn how to put these universal wisdoms into practice while creating a 5-Star future for ourselves.
Till then … Stay safe – stay connected.
[i] Mandela, Nelson, R. (1994). Illustrated. The long walk to freedom. The
Autobiography of Nelson Mandela. Little, Brown & Company: London.
Hattingh, Brenda. (2014). Sevens steps to securing the Madiba Magic in life and
leadership. Currency Communications (Pty. Ltd.); Johannesburg.
[iv] From: Nelson Mandela. Conversations with myself.
[v] From Nelson Mandela’s unpublished autobiographical manuscript, 1975.
[vi] From: Nelson Mandela. Conversations with myself.