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Dec 05
Shambhala News Service
Dedication to Nelson Mandela

Nelson MandelaSakyong begins practices for Nelson Mandela, invites Shambhala community to join

The Sakyong, Jamgon Mipham Rinpoche, has begun practices for Nelson Mandela, the historic leader who spearheaded the struggle against apartheid in South Africa and inspired the transformation of his country into the “rainbow nation.”

The Sakyong has invited members of the Shambhala community to dedicate their individual or community practice to the commemoration of “Madiba,” the name by which Mr. Mandela is affectionately known and honored throughout South Africa. Individuals can dedicate the benefit of their personal practice to Madiba, his family and all those who are experiencing loss and mourning in the wake of the announcement of his death. They may also wish to contemplate the historic role that Madiba played and the impact of his life and message on the world. Shambhala Centers and groups may similarly dedicate their practice to Madiba. His photo may be placed on the shrine for the occasion; people could be invited to speak from their heart about what his life means to them; there could be readings from his autobiography, “Long Walk to Freedom”; there could be individual and group contemplation of his role in bringing about the end of apartheid and the contribution he has made to a more just world order.

In a letter to Mr Mandela’s widow, Graca Machel, the Sakyong has written: “The whole world watched as Madiba emerged from 27 years in prison, a free man. He had devoted himself single-mindedly to breaking the shackles of apartheid, which had held his country and its people in its grip for decades. Through his deep inner work, his personal struggle and his vision for what the world now calls “the rainbow nation,” he came to a powerful and unshakeable awareness of the human dignity inherent in all people. This was the conviction that fueled him. It inspired his followers, and even his opponents. As he said: ‘I have never yet met an enemy whom I did not try to turn into a friend.’ What made him a giant of history is that he tried to do that not only for himself, but for his entire nation. In this way, his life has been an inspiration for all humanity. I bow to his courage, love, and vision.”

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12 responses to “ Dedication to Nelson Mandela ”
  1. Kenneth Sutton
    Dec 10, 2013

    “FREEDOM is our struggle.” ~~ Nelson broke through the barriers so beautifully to set a sacred space for ALL HUMANKIND, a real global space of social justice which includes fairness without fear, inclusiveness without judgement, freedom without force, compassion without consent, action without murder, equality without color, peace without cruelly harming and humiliating fellow human beings.

    This is the heart and soul philosophy through which Nelson’s VOICE has touched me.

    Many years ago, after a series of real life encounters when a sudden illumination appeared to me that APARTHEID is not only about racial separation; but (and even more) UNIVERSAL APARTHEID is a deeply personal feeling of rejection, of isolation, of exclusion, of dis-empowerment, of alienation, which tragically imprisons (traps) an individual in a cage of COLLECTIVE DEATH and SOCIAL SUICIDE.

    From this reflective awareness, I wrote the line of my life: “The most violent, the most lethal, the most oppressive, the most segregating weapon on this planet Earth is the tongue, and, unspeakably, the venom that it unleashes!”

  2. Thank you so much, Rinpoche, for acknowledging Mandela in this beautiful way. Mandela was a true inspiration to me, and I have been following the news closely and mourning his passing. I will include him in my practice.
    I came across this quote of Mandela’s in a column in the newspaper on the weekend, which sounded so Shambhalian… “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.” To come out of 27 years in prison without bitterness and be willing to embrace those who had imprisoned him…a true inspiration for us all! May his journey continute!

  3. Even 27 years of prison term could not crush the spirit of bravery, basic-goodness and compassion in Mandela! Few leaders in politics shine with embodied wisdom of the feminine principle. They are the guardians of humanity.

    Mandela quotes for Contemplation

    “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.”

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

    Thank You Sakyong.

  4. For me, Madiba is a profound manifestation of Drala, the unconditional confidence that is beyond enemy. Personally I take inspiration from him as a man who faced his inner demons and extended love to his enemies; a master warrior, who taught us by his deep dignity, and profound appreciation of life. May we all send love to his family and friends, and to all our enemies in his honour. Peace to you Madiba.

  5. Rinpoche,
    Thank you for your acknowledgment of the life and passing of this great man.
    Nelson Mandela, a true bodhisattva. May we learn by his example.

  6. Dan Hessey
    Dec 7, 2013

    I am so moved that we in Shambhala are acknowledging his profound example of warriorship in our tradition and on our shrines for this occasion. I bow to his example, he was a vanguard of proving the impossible to be possible.

  7. Sharon Arms
    Dec 6, 2013

    Mandela–only one letter difference from “mandala.” Such a force for good.

  8. Linda V. Lewis
    Dec 6, 2013

    Mandela is a great example of making the impossible possible: the prisoner who became President and who freed his nation from apartheid.

  9. I have been wondering what I could do… thank you so much Rinpoche – for your beautiful words – and for guiding us on how we might further expand his vision, love and compassion

  10. Like so many others, he had the great good fortune to be born in auspicious circumstances, blessed with power and comfortable with rulership. He was one who used these gifts widely to benefit others.

  11. One of the great bodhisattvas of our time. He will be so missed. Thank you, Rinpoche, for your beautiful words.,.

  12. Jeanne Cain
    Dec 5, 2013

    One person who made a difference to all of us with his courage and fortitude.
    May his vision for Africa be fulfilled.

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