Many of us are heroes, although we may not think of ourselves that way. In small or large every-day-ways, we give our lives and our love to make our world a better place. We rarely know what impact our daily contributions make, but we can be encouraged by the life of Nelson Mandela who passed on December 5, 2013. I feel his life story carries reassurance and guidance for our personal journeys and know that his spirit continues to support our world’s evolution even now.
You may know his story, but it bears retelling to harvest its gifts:The small white population in South Africa repressed the non-violent African population to the point where they chose violence. Nelson a leader in the movement for freedom was imprisoned for 27 years in extremely harsh conditions. While there, he harnessed his anger and pain and gained influence within the prison system through patient and insistent strength of character, kindness and forgiveness. He befriended his captors, who ultimately looked to him to lead them and the country out of the impasse that occurred when the whites could no longer maintain dominance but were frightened to let it go. Through inner healing and mastery, he led his country into victory.
While he was imprisoned, things heated up to a bloody civil war, not just between the Africans and whites, but in an overflow of anger, Africans began killing each other. When Mandela was released from prison and elected to presidency, it was clear to him that to treat the white population in the manner they had treated the Africans would lead to further destruction of all that was good and true in the African people. What was needed was the same kind of victory he had over himself, which required forgiveness and cooperation with everyone, including the whites.
Nelson told the African people that if he could forgive, so could they. His great integrity, speaking from his own experience, allowed a peaceful shift from white rule to African rule.
We can see Nelson Mandela’s story as a metaphor for our own inner and outer life. We all have aspects of soul that have been repressed by parents, society, relationships or our even ourselves. Repressed power becomes destructive behavior toward strangers, self or loved ones. This power has the potential to move us in the direction of our truth and victory, if we choose that path. Harnessing our repressed power toward the goals of our truth requires us to forgive ourselves and others. Not to ignore the wrongs, but allow them to focus us into self-mastery and personal integrity. Nelson Mandela had this great victory in a 6 X 12 foot cell over 27 years. He used the restriction to hone and master himself.
There is no freedom without forgiveness. Fear, hatred, blame and anger imprison us like a jail cell. We can become used to these unloving walls within and not even notice that they are ruining our life. Forgiveness is not something you do for those who have oppressed you, you do it for yourself, because until you forgive, the oppressor is still in control; destroying all that is good, bit by bit, eating away your wholeness.
Anger may motivate us when we have been passive and oppressed, so the first step to power might be feeling angry at what is wrong in your life. The next step is to direct your awareness inward to honor your hurt places and find your true relationship with yourself and the eternal oneness with Source which is who you truly are. I call this your, inner wisdom and this is a root of your true power. This root of truth is within you; claiming its power and truth, nothing can oppress you for long. You become a leader in your own life awakening healing and balance within all aspects of yourself, so that there is increasing cooperation between body, emotion, mind and spirit. This inner cooperation will set free your potential.
Forgiveness is enlightened self-interest. It reunites us with our true source and brings healing to our world. Over time we will heal deeper levels of hurts, and so find deeper elements of power and truth within. Rather than repressing our anger and pain, we can reclaim its power for positive forward movement, through acknowledging it and choosing love. Love is always a choice. That doesn’t mean sitting down and letting ourselves be oppressed, it means using our power to find our inner truth, rather than turning to rage and hatred that leaves us even more wounded. It means responding in kindness but firmness to life, not being a doormat, but helping everyone to find their right place within the whole.
When you see yourself acting out anger against others, or resorting to self-repressing behaviors, whether they be stuffing feelings and reactions or numbing them with food, alcohol or drugs, you can go within and turn that power to a loving choice for yourself and for your world instead. Anger is the power that motivates change, when we move out of passivity it comes up. Don’t stuff it, use it. It will change something, what use will you put it to? Let it be the change that is needed. Focus that power toward learning to love and unify the forces within you in service of your truth. Then use it to influence the world around through love, kindness and integrity.
Eve Wilson’s healings and classes help you find inner truth and overcome limitations, heal wounds of body, emotion, mind, spirit or become a legally certified healer. 28 years healing adults, children, couples, families, pets, houses and the planet. www.spiritualhealers.com appointments, classes, The Weekly Word for Healing & Ascension, 734-780-7635.