My company, Energy for Life, has sponsored the Whole Man Expo in the Denver, CO area the past three years. At each Expo a committee has selected five finalists and a grand winner of the Whole Man of the Year award. If I could vote for a whole man statesman of the year, I would without hesitation cast my ballot for Nelson Mandela, posthumously.
Most of you are well aware of Mr. Mandela’s sterling credentials, a combination of exceptional character traits coupled with “eye-popping” national achievements that have had touched and rallied people world-wide. I want to highlight the reasons I regard Nelson as a consummate whole man and statesperson.
- Unwavering courage in devoting his life to fight apartheid in South Africa
- Complete self-sacrifice for his cause, enduring 27 years of imprisonment in a tight cell under squalid conditions
- A genuinely charismatic and visionary leader, who not only rallied his nation to overcome an evil system, but who inspired people across the planet
- Demonstrated poetic eloquence in speaking and writing
- Recognizing the potentially transformational value of sports, the driving force behind hugely-underdog South Africa’s World Cup soccer championship
- In general, a man with a pure heart and a massive spirit
This Mandela quote bespeaks the power, dedication and beauty of the man:
I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.
Bless you, Nelson Mandela, for your glorious contributions to humanity and may your brilliant love shine forth in the afterlife. I fully believe that your soulful work will soon continue in the “high heavens.”