Mandela's Way: Lessons on Life, Love, and Courage [Richard Stengel, Nelson are available for instant access. view Kindle eBook | view Audible audiobook. Now Richard Stengel, the editor of Time magazine, has distilled countless hours of intimate conversation with Mandela into fifteen essential life lessons. For nearly three years, including the critical period when Mandela moved South Africa toward the first democratic. An Excerpt from Mandela's Way: Fifteen Lessons on Life, Love, and Courage by Richard Stengel. "Some call it a blind spot, others naivete, but Mandela sees.
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A compact, profoundly inspiring book that captures the spirit of Nelson Mandela, distilling the South African leader's wisdom into 15 vital life. Mandela: His 8 Lessons of Leadership. By Richard oppressor and oppressed, in a way that had never been done before. In the s I. “The Nelson Mandela who emerges from Long Walk to Freedom is considerably more human than the icon of legend.” “A manual for human beings Should . In time, Jongintaba would return the favor in a way that my father could not.
And it was an incredibly bold thing to do.
And by the way, it also got him in trouble with his colleagues, some of whom felt that he was betraying the movement. Nevertheless, he did go ahead, start those negotiations and of course, at some time, he had to then tell his colleagues what he was doing. STENGEL: Yes, and he, you know, he chuckled as he told me the story of telling his colleagues because there were four of them and two of them said, you know, why didn't you start earlier? And two of them said, you know, how unintelligible Very bad idea.
What are you doing? CONAN: Because this was the fundamental key question the ANC had argued all along, no, no, no, we can never have negotiations until we are treated as equals, indeed until all those political prisoners are let go. In fact, you know, there was a moment when the white government offered him his release. This is long before and the '80s. If he renounced the military struggle, and he famously did not, and one of his daughters read his remarks at a speech in Soweto that said, you know, had that famous line that only free men can negotiate.
And that's the basis in which he rejected being released from prison early. If you'd like to ask about how the great man became the great man, give us a call, Email us: talk npr.
Let's go to Jesse ph. Jesse with us from Hartford in Connecticut. How are you? I am curious to know that your guest can comment with South Africa is coming into the international spotlight with the upcoming FIFA games in What is the legacy that is left behind and sort of what will be the discussion as the world is sort of refocused on South Africa once again? What is the legacy that people will be discussing?
Jesse, it's a good and fair question.
And - I mean, there really - there wouldn't be a World Cup in South Africa this year if the legacy of Nelson Mandela wasn't the fact that he united the country.
He prevented what he thought was possibly imminent, which was a civil war between, you know, white conservatives and black freedom fighters. And he felt the country was really on the knife edge of a civil war when he got out. And it was basically his great achievement that he united the country, that he basically said, you know, to the South African whites, hey, let's keep the past behind us.
He said to the, you know, to the great rank and file of his own voters, you know, let's be patient and let's move together. We - you know, this is a great rainbow nation of all different colors and we have to move together with one person, one vote democracy. I mean, that's his great legacy. And, you know, the nation has been pretty successful economically since then. I mean, it does have some very, you know, difficult structural problems, a very high HIV rate, a high crime rate, but it really did exceed expectations, particularly those who thought the country would descend into a civil war.
And it had never been a situation like what happened in South Africa before. How much of that was true? And part of learning about, you know, the Afrikaan, you know, the white South African, basically, who had imposed apartheid on that country was that their favorite sport was rugby. And, you know, Mandela always said to appeal to people, you have to appeal to their head and their heart.
And him understanding rugby, embracing rugby, was a way of appealing to the Afrikaner's heart, and he hoped the heart of the nation. And so it became a kind of symbol and even metaphor for what Mandela was trying to achieve as a whole. So I mean, the basic truth of it, I think, is absolutely correct and fair. We think of Nelson Mandela as, if anything else, utterly fearless, and according to what you write, nothing could be further from the truth. STENGEL: Well, he - you know, one of the things, Neal, that I found so fascinating and amazing when I was talking to him - and we did many, many, many hours of interviews for "Long Walk to Freedom" - was he would often say, you know, I was terrified or I was very scared that the guard was going to assault me or - he was constantly saying or often said, you know, that he was feeling fear.
And at first, I just thought it was amazing. I mean, here is one of the greatest heroes of 20th century, one of the greatest heroes ever, expressing this fear.
And I would ask him about it, and he would say, well, Richard, it's - it would be irrational not to be afraid, wouldn't it? And what I realized was that part of his courage is that he would admit to being scared.
But part of his courage was him analyzing his own situation and saying, look, I'm a symbol, I'm a leader. I feel fear here, but I have to camouflage it. I have to, as he often said, put up a front. So all of - many of these occasions when other prisoners or other people or other South Africans looked up to Mandela as this fearless hero, he was, you know, feeling same kind of anxieties and fears and trepidations that we all feel, but he managed to rise above it.
I mean, that is what makes him a great hero, I think. CONAN: One of the great stories Richard Stengel tells in "Mandela's Way" is about an airplane flight that Nelson Mandela took with one of his bodyguards, a man named Mike ph , who, halfway through the flight, a twin-prop-plane, and one of the propellers stop turning, Nelson Mandela looked up from his newspaper and noticed that and told Mike to inform the pilot and went back to his newspaper.
Mike said he was utterly terrified of this, but looked at Mandela, he was just calmly reading his newspaper, landed. And then later, Richard Stengel took a car ride with Nelson Mandela, who told him, I was absolutely terrified up there.
STENGEL: Now, it was - it's - and again, talking to Mike afterwards - I mean, Mike said the only thing that calmed him and he - this was probably his, you know, second or third airplane trip in his whole life - was that even while the, you know, the plane was landing, Mandela was just very calmly reading the newspaper like he was, you know, commuting in from his suburban home to the office.
And again, as Mandela said, that was him putting up a front, pretending not to be scared, and that calmed Mike and it probably calmed the pilots and calmed all the people on the ground.
Let's go next to Dan ph. Dan's on the line from Wilmington, Delaware.
DAN Caller : Hi. I was wondering what impact or effect did Dr.
King and the American civil rights movements of the '60s have on Nelson Mandela and his freedom struggle in South Africa? I mean, Mandela - you know, South Africa was, of course, a British colony.
He - Mandela never much looked to America. He knew about the Constitution, the founding and Abraham Lincoln. But the - by the time the civil rights movement in America was in high gear, he was already in prison. I mean, he - it - you know, he was imprisoned in There probably wasn't much news that they got in South Africa in those days from America.
Remember that part of a totalitarian government that South Africa had was that it kept out news like that. So he wasn't all that influenced by it. I mean, he The American civil rights movement was, of course, built on the example of Gandhi and nonviolence. It really wasn't until, you know, the very early '60s that the ANC renounced nonviolence. I mean, nonviolence was - they embraced it, partly from that Gandhian tradition. But as Mandela told me at the time - and I write about it on the book -you know, he had won overarching goal, which was to bring freedom to his people and his nation.
And everything else was a tactic or a strategy, as he would say. And he said to me very, very frankly, you know, nonviolence as far as I was concerned was a tactic. It wasn't a moral imperative or principle. And that's a pretty hard truth about Nelson Mandela. They were talking very much along the same lines: nonviolence was a tactic. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear. 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. It always seems impossible until it's done.
When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people. 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. Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. 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.
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. Money won't create success, the freedom to make it will.
We must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right.